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Strengthening laws to protect sex crime victims

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Updated: 9/05/2013 9:27 am
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- State leaders are working to strengthen Florida's sex offender laws after the murder of Cherish Perrywinkle.

Rayne Perrywinkle was emotional, outraged and frustrated Wednesday. Three months later, you could still see she's still struggling with the loss of her daughter Cherish. "I was being blamed for this. I didn't do this," said Rayne Perrywinkle.

Police say registered sex offender Donald Smith did. He was convicted twice for crimes against children, but still let out of jail.

[Special Coverage: Read Donald Smith's Medical Records]

There was a similar story in Clay County in 2007. Michael Renard Jackson was convicted of raping and killing a veterinary tech in 2007. The conviction was thrown out. He's awaiting a new trial. Even before he was tried for murdering Andrea Boyer, he served time for raping a Jacksonville teenager. Jackson served less than half of his 30 year sentence for that crime.

"We do have to take a look at the Florida laws," said Rep. Janet Adkins. Adkins is spear-heading the effort to find out why the system is failing. "Well, obviously today is in response to the tragedy of Cherish," said Adkins.

Adkins did say new legislation will be filed to stop the revolving door for sex offenders in Florida. For one grieving mom, any changes are too little too late. "Why wasn't this done years ago," said Perrywinkle. "If something was done years ago, none of this would've happened."

As for any new laws, no decision was made on that Wednesday. Many of the experts say the big thing they need is more treatment for sex offenders when they get out of jail.
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PhoenixM - 9/5/2013 12:14 PM
1 Vote
What the article fails to mention is that Florida sentencing laws are *already* incredibly strict, and have been for almost twenty years; when the article talks about a repeat offender who only served 15 years out of 30, it's pretty obvious (to those versed in Florida law) that this was a person whose initial crime was committed prior to the mid-1990s (when laws came into effect requiring everyone to serve at least 85% of their sentences). Articles like this are fishing for knee-jerk reactions for problems that have *already been solved*.

Rudy101 - 9/5/2013 9:03 AM
1 Vote
The State is NOT allowed these types of laws that cannot be challenged or appealed. The State is NOT allowed to pass laws that ONLY will result in my HARM. The State is NOT allowed to criminalize normal conduct without a hearing, challenge or appeal. Because the State has done all that and will continue to violate the law in the future, I REFUSE to register under those laws! Either have a court, hearings, appeals, challenges, representation and CREDIBILITY OR your registry will not be followed.

Rudy101 - 9/5/2013 9:03 AM
0 Votes
The State is NOT allowed these types of laws that cannot be challenged or appealed. The State is NOT allowed to pass laws that ONLY will result in my HARM. The State is NOT allowed to criminalize normal conduct without a hearing, challenge or appeal. Because the State has done all that and will continue to violate the law in the future, I REFUSE to register under those laws! Either have a court, hearings, appeals, challenges, representation and CREDIBILITY OR your registry will not be followed.

Rudy101 - 9/5/2013 8:59 AM
1 Vote
Very very few people can get off a sex offender registry in Florida. It is, BY LAW a community protection tool. What the sex offender registry is really doing has no bearing on policy either today or in the future. The sex offender registry is POLITICAL, and, by the nature of being policital, policies and laws that result from the political process in no way has to have ANY efficacy for public safety and can even HARM offenders, the community, and victims. The whole of the sex offender registry is about PERCEPTION. A person is put on a sex offender registry ex-post facto, without hearing and his placement can never be challenged. That list is given to the public in unlimited ways, to specifically and encouraged to be used to discriminate in ever evolving ways. The courts have specifically ruled a person does not have to pose ANY danger and have come up with a NEW standard to justify restrictions (potentially dangerous) that cannot be challenged in any way. The laws are ruled, civil, as they are DESIGNED for protection. However, the OUTCOME of the law can specifically cause HARM and that is not considered a viable challenge to a law. What is a person to do? It is well documented that being on the sex offender registry wil result in the outcomes of harassment, threats, isolation, and fear for offenders. It is well documented that there is no public safety OUTCOMES for sex offender registry. It is clear a person on the registry will be discriminated in unlimited ways that no other criminal class is discriminated against. Nobody can tell me there is a way to get off this registry that was passed and applied ex-post facto. What a person has a RIGHT under the law to do is: To flee the sex offender registry and do whatever it takes to avoid it. The State is NOT allowed th
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