A bill is in the works to make changes to the state’s sex offender registry.
“It’s to look to see who learned, who has changed, who’s modified their lives,” said Pres. for Rational Justice Studies Joseph Dubrow.
Joseph Dubrow works to reintegrate these criminals into society and says not all offenders deserve to be on the registry for life.
“His offense was committed when he was 14 years old. He’s been locked up for 16 years and he’s going to be continued to be locked up, and when he gets out he’ll be on it for life, ” said Dubrow.
The Exec. Director of the Sentencing Commision Alex Tsarkov said, “We want people to get their lives back on track and be productive members of society and if you can not get off the registry it’s very hard to do that.”
That’s why the Sentencing Commission studied the issue for two years and revelaed their findings at a symposium at the School of Law at Uconn today. They believe the state could benefit from two big changes. One, people can petition the court to get off this list.
The second? Change the registry from conviction-based to risk-based. So, instead of being categorized based on the crime, the person would be evaluated and listed by how much of a risk they are to the public.
Supporters say it would focus resources on the offenders who need them the most.
“I think the registry today provides a false sense of security to the public. Half of the people on the registry aren’t on any supervision. It doesn’t mean that anyone see them, visits them. it doesn’t mean they’re in treatment,” said Tsarkov.
CT Alliance to End Sexual Violence’s Executive Director, Laura Cordes says she is open to the idea of these changes, but believes it should not be retroactive and the victim should have input.
“We can not go back on commitments that our state has made to victims at the time of sentencing. That would be an injustice and it means the victim be informed at all steps if an offender were to petition the state,” said Cordes.
The bill will be proposed in committee once the legislative session starts in January.