13 September 2006

Defense attorney "Shocked" to learn former client and convicted sex offender offends again...

An attorney who helped keep his client out of prison after he kidnapped and sexually assaulted a retail clerk said the defendant's light punishment seemed appropriate, given his youth and clean record.

The attorney futher said that no one could have predicted that his client would commit a similar crime almost 20 years later (this time killing his victim).

"It was a shock, if you want to know the truth."


Anonymous said...

So what's your point? That the attorney somehow is at least partially guilty? That defendants should be automatically committed forever? That they can't be "cured"? Unfortunately the recidivism rates for sex crimes don't agree.

Steve Armstrong said...

Certainly, defense attorneys do all they can for their clients - regardless of the offense charge.

That said, sex offenders have taken the spotlight in recent years. Although "high-profile" cases may or may not be the "norm", it is the offender's recidivism rate(s) that have made the most headlines.

I just found it interesting that an attorney representing a convicted sex offender would use the word "shocked" in describing his feelings that his client would re-offend.

In regards to your statement -"The recidivism rates for sex crimes don't agree." Are you kidding? Perhaps "Reconviction rates".

Although it is true that that the overall recidivism rates for sex offenders ARE lower than for the general criminal population, I'd still say that rates ranging from 9-35% (a pretty wide spectrum) is still pretty noticeable.

Also, the TYPE of sex crime is in play when dealing with recidivism. Was the crime Pedophilia? Stranger-Rape? Date-Rape? Incest? The stats take a roller coster ride.

"Individual characteristics of the crimes further distinguish recidivism rates. For instance, victim gender and relation to the offender have been found to impact recidivism rates. In a 1995 study, researchers found that offenders who had extrafamilial female victims had a recidivism rate of 18% and those who had extrafamilial male victims recidivated at a rate of 35%. This same study found a recidivism rate for incest offenders to be approximately 9%" (Quinsey, Rice, and Harris, 1995).

Either way- I don't think that I would be "shocked" to learn that a man who stalked, kidnapped, and sexually assaulted a previous victim would re-offend in the future.

Ken Lammers said...

20 years later? Heck, unless a case was a major battle, the client a major pain in the rear, or the client is a frequent flyer I couldn't remember them 5 years later.

Anyway, it sounds like this guy only remembers a scared kid. 20 years later there might be a little room to be shocked.