There is no justice for sex offenders in our legal system. A few years ago, a Colorado man was shot and killed in a park only days away from the beginning of his trial for sexually assaulting a young girl. The police arrested a 15-year-old girl on suspicion of first-degree murder. The suspect turned out to be the alleged victim in the sexual assault on a child case. A spokesman for the police stated that the case presented a “unique situation”. After months of delay, the girl was sentenced to two years’ probation for the murder.
Sex Offenders – Why Are they Treated Differently?
The 15-year-old girl plead guilty to manslaughter, which is charged when a person “recklessly causes the death of another person.” It is a Class 4 felony in Denver, Broomfield and Jefferson County. Juveniles are not convicted, they are adjudicated, which means they receive a less harsh sentence than they would if they were an adult (over 18). The court could have ordered that she be committed to the Department of Human Services for up to two years or tried as an adult. Instead, she received 2 years of probation in a residential treatment facility, and mental health counseling. Treatment facilities are for teens with mental health and behavioral issues. She killed a man, however, which is not a “behavioral issue.” A man lost his life, instead of receiving the fair trial he was due. Why did this happen?
- Our Court System Believes all Sex Offenders are Dangerous
Our court system believes that sex offenders are dangerous to society in Arapahoe, Douglas and Adams County. The Sex Offender Management board guidelines state that sex offenders are “covert, deceptive and secretive.” The SOMB and our court system believes that sex offenders can’t be cured, and don’t take into account the will to change, or the fact that many sex offenders were abused as children as well (in a report from the Bureau of Justice, it is stated that “sexual assault offenders were substantially more likely than any other category of offenders to report having experienced physical or sexual abuse while growing up.”)
- Sex Offender Treatment: One Size Fits All
Our justice system treats all sex offenders the same, whether they be violent rapists or a man who peed in an alley one too many times. This is unjust. While this man might actually have committed the sexual assault he was accused of, it doesn’t take into account that this girl may have been more of a willing participant than she admits to. In fact, she was visiting the man in Grand Junction where she was found by her mother. That’s when she told police about the sexual assault. Another option, of course, is that this man may have been innocent.