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Appeals Court Takes Up OC's Sex Offender Law

State judges will decide whether California law trumps an Orange County ban on registered sex offenders at parks and beaches.

The state court of appeal has decided to review an Orange County law that bans registered sex offenders from county parks, beaches, harbors and other recreational areas.

The conviction of a sex offender who visited a county park in Fountain Valley was recently overturned by a three-judge Superior Court appellate panel, which said the ban was trumped by a similar but less restrictive state law. The panel sent the case to the Court of Appeal, which will take up the matter.

After the county passed its ban, cities such as Lake Forest, Mission Viejo, Rancho Santa Margarita, Seal Beach, Fountain Valley, Los Alamitos and Laguna Niguel approved similar measures. But this month, Lake Forest repealed its ban, citing the cost of defending it in court and questioning its necessity and effectiveness.

"The ordinance on its face violates both the state and federal constitutions,” Janice Bellucci, president of the California Reform Sex Offender Laws, said in a press release. Belluci also said the ban "does not increase public safety because more than 90 percent of the individuals who sexually assault children are family members, teachers, coaches and clergy, not registered sex offenders.”

The opening brief from the Office of the Public Defender is due Jan. 17, but there has been no date set for the court’s decision. 

DISGUSTED ABOUT IGNORANCE January 09, 2013 at 06:23 AM
By the way, I'm not an offender of any kind and I'm not a homosexual, but EVERYBODY HAS A RIGHT TO LIVE AND EVERYBODY HAS A RIGHT TO BE FORGIVEN AND TO HEAL; INCLUDING THE CHILDREN WHO ARE HARMED. TEACHING A CHILD TO HATE ONLY MAKES MATTERS WORSE AND CAN CAUSE SUCH A TERRIBLE OFFENSE TO BE REPEATED BY THE CHILD WHO WAS ORIGINALLY HARMED BY PEOPLE WHO FOCUS ON "HATE"!!!
DISGUSTED ABOUT IGNORANCE January 09, 2013 at 06:28 AM
HOW ABOUT THOSE FEMALE SEX OFFENDERS WHO ARE GLAMORIZED??? AND ON THE COVER OF ALL KINDS OF MAGAZINES WITH THE "ONCE CHILD" THAT THEY HAD AN AFFAIR WITH AND THEIR NEW BABY??? DOES MARY KAY LATERNO RING A BELL??? Why this Society TREATS MALE & FEMALE OFFENDERS DIFFERENTLY IS PROOF OF THE CHAUVINISM THAT PLAGUES BOTH MALE AND FEMALE CONSCIOUSNESS. "SUCH HYPOCRITES"..."SUCH HYPOCRITES"....
JustUs January 09, 2013 at 06:45 AM
I understand your disgust, sir. I have no dog in this race. I have never been a victim of an RSO. I am not a RSO. I do not have any family, friends or acquaintances who are RSO's (as far as I know). So I am not emotionally involved in any way. I see this as a violation of our US Constitution and I take that very seriously. RSO's should not be society's modern witches so that prosecutors can increase their popularity with the electorate. That is an abuse of the justice system. It is despicable. I am ashamed of our leaders for pulling this stunt. It should never happen in a constitutional republic. I can't say that I have a favorable opinion of RSO's who have harmed another human. But I love my US Constitution much more than I could ever hate an RSO. I defended the honor of the US Constitution when I served in the military - and I will continue to do so. I understand your outrage. Hopefully saner minds will prevail.
DISGUSTED ABOUT IGNORANCE January 09, 2013 at 08:25 AM
I agree with you on many points. I, too, hate the fact that an innocent child or any other human is harmed and that is atrocious. I respect your point of view and THANK YOU for serving our country. I don't believe in the "Justice System" -- TODAY -- as it has failed in so many ways, so I don't know that because someone is "Convicted by a Jury" that they are truly "Guilty" anymore. I am also not the one to judge from my perspective because I am not anyone else but myself. I can only answer for myself and never forgiving others means that I am not worthy to be forgiven for my mistakes either. I wish people could just see themselves first before casting that stone. The true harm comes when someone, who is apparently ill-minded, cannot get help or is afraid of asking for help -- victim or offender of all sorts. This Society has a habit of instantly judging and prosecuting others without a fair trial, so it is very easy to be convicted of a crime one never committed. Thankfully, I am not in those shoes, however, I try to view the "whole picture" as well, and mind my own damn business before I try to judge another. I am sure that at some time in my own family, something heinous has happened and "no one spoke about it" and just buried the damage -- so to speak. There are too many injustices "all around" in our country today and so many "Witch Hunts" of all kinds. It's people like some of the ones on this thread that enables the harm to continue and grow into other harms.
JustUs January 09, 2013 at 05:08 PM
Yes, disgusted. All one needs to do is study the rise of Stalin or the rise of Nazi Germany to understand the 'slippery slope' and how it works. I do not want my country going down that same path. When I took the oath to defend the constitution, unlike many, I meant it and that oath is for a lifetime. Regardless of how unsavory a human being might be, I will defend his or her rights endowed by our creator and guaranteed under the US Constitution come hell or high water. Once we start the hand-wringing over who the US Constitution applies to - we are doomed to becoming a 3rd world banana republic. With me, that don't float.

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