In Just 97 Minutes. . . . . . .

The below is OCEAN Newsletter Volume 1, Issue 5, Article 2 (Nov. 13, 2019) published by Russell J. Hatton & Daniel A. Wilson from the gulag in Moose Lake Minnesota.


Minnesota’s passage of its current SVP scheme shares a similar history to corresponding laws in other jurisdictions. Dennis Linehan is a man with a long history of violent sex crimes, including the murder and sexual assault of a 14-year-old girl – was paroled in 1992. Although the State tried to commit him, a court found that it did not establish that Linehan had an “utter lack of power to control his sexual impulses” as required under the prevailing test.¹ In response, the legislature quickly moved to enact a civil commitment law that lessened the State’s burden.

Just eight days before the state’ s primaries, the Governor [Arne Carlson] called for a special session. In just 97 minutes, the legislature passed the SVP Act. Notably, the bill’s drafters told their colleagues not to talk about the Linehan case, warning that, “Whatever we say on the floor will be used against us …. It’s going to be used to challenge the bill.” ²


¹ In re Linehan, 518 N. W .2d 609, 614 (Minn. 1994) ( finding that the district court had failed to provide clear and convincing evidence that Linehan was utterly unable to control his sexual impulses)
²In re Linehan, 557 N.W.2d 171, 198 (Minn. 1996) (Tomjanovich, J., dissenting).

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