The Dobbs Wire: Banishment! Patty Wetterling, Jill Levenson and more

The Dobbs Wire:  Banishment!  In the 21st century many localities in the United States use an ancient means to get rid of people who have been stigmatized and are despised, banishment.  More formally and politely known as “residency restrictions,” the desired result of such laws is to drive individuals who are blacklisted — required to sign the sex offense registry — out of their houses and even out of town altogether.  The most infamous example of these awful laws is the encampment of homeless registered persons that sprung up under the Julia Tuttle Causeway in Florida.   In the last several…

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$28 million award for “Beatrice 6” whom police psychologist helped railroad to prison

“For years, a group of outcasts in Beatrice, Neb., were convinced they had brutally raped and murdered an elderly woman named Helen Wilson one night in February 1985, even though they couldn’t remember any of it.” That’s the lead of today’s story in the Washington Post, announcing a $28.1 million award to the “Beatrice Six” who spent a collective 70 years in prison before being exonerated a decade ago. Of interest to this blog’s audience is the role of the police psychologist. As I blogged about back in 2008, Wayne R. Price, PhD saw no ethics conflict in helping to…

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The Dobbs Wire: Crime and Punishment

Crime and Punishment:  There’s growing awareness that far too many people are getting punished in the U.S., and that they are being given far too much punishment.  Some of the punishment is extreme, even unconscionable — the death penalty, solitary confinement, life in prison (“death by incarceration”), lifetime supervision, sex offense registries, and more.  Organizers are usually unsung but they get the credit for rising public concern about criminal injustices and now they’re hard at work to spotlight harsh measures used in the “worse of the worst” cases.  What about accountability for really terrible crimes?  Have a look at this…

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The Dobbs Wire: First Amendment WIN in Alabama!

First Amendment WIN in Alabama:  Alabama’s sex offense registration law, said to be “the most comprehensive and debilitating sex-offender scheme in the nation,” suffered some damage at the hands of a federal judge.  A provision in the law that requires registrants to carry a driver’s license or official ID with “CRIMINAL SEX OFFENDER” emblazoned in red was struck down.  That horrifying message legitimizes profiling by law enforcement (and others), ensuring that registrants are treated as suspects far into the future; even a coded message should be held unconstitutional.  The court also struck down “internet identifier” provisions in the law.   Kudos…

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Radio interview with WPFW 89.3FM

Pre-crime preventative dentation was the focus of an hour- long conversation on the Crossroads Radio show hosted by Roach Brown and Nkechi Taisa  on WPFW 89.3FM, known as “Washington’s station for jazz and justice”   Click Play to listen to Garnett Robins- Baughman and Bernida Thompson talk about how their families have been directly impacted by these Kafkaesque systems and their work with Just Future Project.  Garnett and Bernida were joined by Phil Fornaci, director of The DC Prisoners’ Project at the Washington lawyers’ comity for civil rights & urban affairs, to describe the abusive and unconstitutional application of these laws —…

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The Dobbs Wire: Untouchable NEWS – streaming available – Now!

Some great news about UNTOUCHABLE, David Feige’s award-winning documentary…  At last, the film is available for streaming Now on: Amazon, iTunes, Google Play, and Kanopy See it!  Bill Dobbs, The Dobbs Wire     More people now on sex-offender registry than in jail in the US   Stream it starting January 15 on Amazon, iTunes and Google Play.   =================================================     Find it at your public or institutional library on     Watch the trailer   FACT: More people are now listed on sex-offender registries than are currently in jail in the US. It’s an amazing statistic that illuminates one of the darkest…

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The Dobbs Wire: Just out – Florida registry report

The Dobbs Wire:  A report on Florida’s sex offense registry is just out, issued by an agency that works for the state’s lawmakers.  Big takeaway – the number of registrants continues to climb and has been increasing for many years.  Why?   That key question is not answered.   According to the report, the state’s registry has more than 73,000 listings.  However, the number living in Florida communities is much smaller, less than 29,000.   That’s quite a lot of registrants that are classified as living out-of-state, incarcerated, deceased(!), etc.  Also in the report are various ways the Florida Department of Law Enforcement…

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The Dobbs Wire: Rogue judge driven off the bench

A Pittsburgh criminal court judge has finally submitted her resignation. Judge Donna Jo McDaniel’s expected exit comes after repeated rebukes by a Pennsylvania appeals court, extensive news coverage, the ire of at least one editorial board, and talk of an investigation by the state’s judicial conduct commission. First elected to the bench in 1985, McDaniel was driven from office for failing to deliver fair and impartial justice – treating individuals charged with sex offenses (and their defense counsel) terribly, imposing excessive sentences and repeatedly abusing her discretion.  McDaniel’s departure is a victory for reason and justice, even more so given…

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The Dobbs Wire: Registries are not feminist!

Amid rising anger over sexual wrongdoing, a feminist writer takes aim at the sex offense registry.  Reina Gattuso’s powerful essay questions the existence of an official government blacklist that now ensnares hundreds of thousands of individuals, have a look!   -Bill Dobbs, The Dobbs Wire info@thedobbswire.com     Femnisting | Dec. 21, 2018 Why Should Feminists Be Against the Sex Offender Registry?     By Reina Gattuso   Established in the ‘90s following several high-profile rapes and murders of children, the sex offender registry used parental grief to propagate “tough on crime” policies.  But there’s a problem: sex offender registries don’t…

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