Banned from the library

January 14, 2010
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First they were prohibited from living too close to schools and then public park bans became the norm. Now, one legislator hopes to ban registered sex offenders from public libraries. If they show up there to check out a book or work on legal documents for a case, they can be charged with a Class D felony. There is one exception – they can vote in the library if that’s where their polling place is located, but the bill specifies they need to hightail it out of there once their vote is cast. No dillydallying before or after voting.

I know the idea behind the legislation HB 1326 is the same as the other bans imposed on sex offenders: to protect children. But are these bans creating a slippery slope where soon sex offenders won’t be able to leave their homes?

Children congregate in lots of places – churches, shopping malls, restaurants. Will we have to enact legislation to ban registered sex offenders from these places? I guarantee you there are sex offenders working in malls and restaurants – just visit the state’s online database of sex and violent offenders to see for yourself.

I am in no way trying to downplay the seriousness of the crimes these offenders commit against innocent children. We need to protect children as best we can from becoming victims, whether that be vigilant about knowing who lives in your neighborhood, not letting your children play or walk alone outside, or in other ways.

I know that not every sex offender can be “cured” or rehabilitated in prison. But I also know that they have served their time and that unless our legislature wants to impose tougher and longer penalties against those who commit sex crimes against children, our society is going to have to find a way to deal with sex offenders interacting with the general public.
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  1. The practitioners and judges who hail E-filing as the Saviour of the West need to contain their respective excitements. E-filing is federal court requires the practitioner to cram his motion practice into pigeonholes created by IT people. Compound motions or those seeking alternative relief are effectively barred, unless the practitioner wants to receive a tart note from some functionary admonishing about the "problem". E-filing is just another method by which courts and judges transfer their burden to practitioners, who are the really the only powerless components of the system. Of COURSE it is easier for the court to require all of its imput to conform to certain formats, but this imposition does NOT improve the quality of the practice of law and does NOT improve the ability of the practitioner to advocate for his client or to fashion pleadings that exactly conform to his client's best interests. And we should be very wary of the disingenuous pablum about the costs. The courts will find a way to stick it to the practitioner. Lake County is a VERY good example of this rapaciousness. Any one who does not believe this is invited to review the various special fees that system imposes upon practitioners- as practitioners- and upon each case ON TOP of the court costs normal in every case manually filed. Jurisprudence according to Aldous Huxley.

  2. Any attorneys who practice in federal court should be able to say the same as I can ... efiling is great. I have been doing it in fed court since it started way back. Pacer has its drawbacks, but the ability to hit an e-docket and pull up anything and everything onscreen is a huge plus for a litigator, eps the sole practitioner, who lacks a filing clerk and the paralegal support of large firms. Were I an Indiana attorney I would welcome this great step forward.

  3. Can we get full disclosure on lobbyist's payments to legislatures such as Mr Buck? AS long as there are idiots that are disrespectful of neighbors and intent on shooting fireworks every night, some kind of regulations are needed.

  4. I am the mother of the child in this case. My silence on the matter was due to the fact that I filed, both in Illinois and Indiana, child support cases. I even filed supporting documentation with the Indiana family law court. Not sure whether this information was provided to the court of appeals or not. Wish the case was done before moving to Indiana, because no matter what, there is NO WAY the state of Illinois would have allowed an appeal on a child support case!

  5. "No one is safe when the Legislature is in session."

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