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Monday, February 06, 2006

Virginia Considers Surgical Castration of Sex Offenders

News Channel 3 in the Hampton Roads is reporting:

"Senator Emmett Hanger is promoting legislation that would allow the operation. He says he's fed up with ineffective and costly treatment for sexual predators."

Further they report others argue against this as being effective claiming that sexual offenders are motivated by more than just the aspect of sexual desires.

Interestingly, I recently read a study that was conducted by the Virginia Department of Corrections.

The results surprised me and is contrary to popular belief. The study reveals that sex offenders (at 3.2 percent) are the most unlikely group to offend again. This was a totally unexpected result, since many have emphasized that repeat sexual offenders are the norm rather than the exception. Property crimes was found to hold the largest number of repeat offenders. (at 48 percent)

In any case, even just one repeat of a sexual offence in a rape or child molestation is enough for me to think castration is worth considering.


At 8:56 AM, Blogger Charlie said...

Hi Bob. We have one of those contraptions to castrate bulls and it always makes me feel week at the knees when using them, just the threat might be enough.

At 11:40 AM, Blogger Melissa O. Markham said...

Yikes! Looking at that picture makes me want to run screaming into the night and I am not a guy or a sex offender!

I found it interesting that they are not as likely to repeat their offense as other criminals.

I do wonder how much castration would help. I have always heard rape is as much if not more about anger than sex. I wonder if the same can be said of other types of molestation.

At 11:48 AM, Blogger B O B said...

Hi Melissa, castration may help in some cases but not all. It is already used in eight states as an alternative to a jail sentence. I see the picture got your attention, perhaps just the image of that picture would deter some from the idea of being a sex offender.

At 8:56 PM, Blogger Rebecca said...

hmmm. I wonder at the accuracy of that statistic. I worked with people that survived sexual attacks, and their perps had usually been doing it for a while despite jail time. Jail cannot and will not rehabilitate a sexual predator. The thought of castration would only be a device of fear, and would eventually lose it's power. Sexual predators have much deeper issues, the mind needs retrained. Which isn't likely to happen in this culture of sexual bombardment.

At 12:31 AM, Blogger B O B said...

Hi all and thanks for the comments the Viriginia corrections study considered 514 individuals released in 1998, of all the crimes this contained the least number followed. The methodology of the study was exact for all groups.

This is a partial summary.

1. Recidivists (Who Committed A New Crime) by Offense Type
Nearly 48% of offenders were returned for a property crime. Of the property crime recidivists, 54.6% (742) committed a new crime within the same offense category.

Twenty-three percent of offenders were returned for drug offenses. Of the recidivists in the drug category, 315 or (23.2%) were re-incarcerated for a crime committed within the same offense category.

Seventeen percent of those who recidivated were returned for non-sex violent crimes. Of the recidivists in the violent category, 12.9% (175) committed a new crime within the same offense category as their original offense.

Almost eight percent of those who recidivated were returned for non-violent crimes. Of the non-violent recidivists, 6.3% (85) of recidivists in this category were re-incarcerated for the same offense type.

Sex crime recidivists made up 3.7% of the total recidivists. Of the sex crime recidivists, 3.1% (42) committed a new crime within the same offense category.

2. Time Out before Re-Commitment

The overall average time out in the community before reincarceration for a technical violation or new crime was 1.5 years.

The first recidivist that was returned for a new crime within every offense category, except sex crimes, recidivated within one month or less. There were three property offenders who recidivated in less than one month. It took four months for the first sex crime recidivist to be returned to prison.

If you are interested in reading the detailed summary here is the link. What I looked at was the latest study for 2005


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