Civil Commitment of Sexual Offenders Civil commitment depends on a clinical assessment of the sex offender's risk of re-offense and the court's determination of whether or not the offender meets the criteria for commitment. There are several forms of sex offender civil commitment, and the states have chosen to implement laws in different ways…
Minnesota allows for civil commitment of sex offenders who have completed their jail terms, a provision that has been made in the Minnesota Commitment Act. The act reasons that civil commitment of sex offenders is a necessary measure to prevent dangerous sexual offences from occurring in the future (Barnickol, 2001). In California, civil commitment fro sex offenders is allowed under the Sexually Violent Predator Law. The provisions of the commitment law for sex offenders in California are the same as in Kansas and Minnesota. Other States that have adopted civil commitment laws for sex offenders who are deemed dangerous include: Washington, Missouri, Florida, Wisconsin, Massachusetts and Iowa (McCaffrey, 1994). One of the similarities that stand out in many of the sex offenders’ civil commitment laws in different states is the requirement that a criminal is likely to pose sexual offense danger to other people after he is released at the end of his jail term. The laws seek to have violent sex predators who have some form of mental abnormality to be committed to involuntarily and indefinitely to appropriate facilities for treatment. The laws also require that such offenders must have completed their jail sentences. Although all the civil commitment laws in states that have adopted are largely similar, there are a few differences that exist. For instance, in the Texas legislation of civil commitment, a criminal is liable to commitment if he is found to have behavioral abnormality. This is different from the mental abnormality mentioned in other similar legislations (Prentky, Janus, and Barbaree, 2006). Different states have also taken different approaches in the management of civilly committed sexual offender populations. Florida for example, requires the offenders to be committed to be assessed by a qualified team so as to determine if they are sexually violent predators. The evaluation process is a civil proceeding after which those offenders found to meet the criteria are kept under watch at the Florida Civil Commitment Center together with other detainees who are still awaiting similar civil trials (McCaffrey, 1994). In Washington, evaluation of an offender’s state of mind is done by a Joint Forensic Unit whose members are forensic experts who deal specifically with risk evaluations related to sex offence. If the offender is fond to meet all the legal requirements for civil commitment, the King County Prosecutor’s Office or the Attorney General’s office then files a petition and a hearing is scheduled within 72 hours. If the superior court finds the offender to be a suitable candidate for a civil commitment trial, he is taken to the DSHS Special Commitment Center located on McNeil Island. During the trial, the jury or judge must determine without doubt that the offender is a sexually violent predator before he is transferred to a Secure Community Transition Facility (LaFond and Winick, 2003). Similar civil or court hearings are scheduled for each offender who is regarded to have mental abnormality which makes him a danger to others in all the states where civil commitment for sexual predators has been legalized. After they are committed in specialized facilities, the sexual predators receive special treatment for a specified period to make them better members of society after which they are released to carry on with normal life. Costs vs. Benefits of Civil Commitment One of the benefits of civil ...
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This objective is achieved by incorporating scientific knowledge to deliberate upon cases and out of all the scientific methods of research, psychology and psychiatry have been a major contributing factor on a legal front and forms the basis of the insanity defense.
According to the report child sexual abuse is defined here as the “forced or coerced sexual behavior imposed on a child,” or as “sexual activity between a child and a much older person whether or not obvious coercion is involved”. This definition includes the possibility that the child victim allows the sexual act because of manipulation or seduction of the adult.
The justice process of juvenile is based on the rational that the developmental process of the juveniles is quite different from that of adults and their behavior can be altered over a certain amount of time period. Due to this, the juvenile justice system treats this section of the society with the aim of rehabilitating them and providing them protection with the assistance of community.
The term could also be used to refer to a person who has come out of incarceration or probation because sexual offense. Registration of sexual offenders with local authorities is an issue of great contention. Serving prison, conviction or probation terms is reason enough why sexual offenders should not be registered.
For a long time, sexual offenders were not well understood and there were no methods of handling sexual offenders in a better way. Research has indicated that sexual offenders have certain risk factors. For example, mentally disturbed individuals are likely to be involved in sexual offense compared to normal people.
An estimated 8,000 children are affected each year as a result of their mother's imprisonment (Page, 2003). As these statistics show, the situation of female offenders seems to be alarmingly bad.
Thus, female offenders are recently in focus by the criminal justice system in terms of their misdemeanours and their various needs.
Hollin (1989) has defined the fact that the most difficult task in studying crimes of a sexual nature is in the attempt of rationalizing what the sexual offender was motivated by to engage in such an act against another human being. Due to trying to interpret criminal behaviors, Hollin (1989) claims that it is one of the many reasons that the development of criminology was introduced into the legal system, to assist investigators with attempting to decipher the causes and various reasons different forms of crime take place.
Aggravated sexual contact, abusive sexual contact, and sexual abuse of minor or ward are all considered serious crimes in the US (Reamer, 2005). Sexual offenders may be motivated to commit such heinous acts due to their arousal patterns thus use of behavioral interventions
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