Law Offices of Jess C. Bedore III - Certified Specialist in Criminal Law
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Man challenges lifetime monitoring as punishment for sex crime

A very interesting case about search and seizures, GPS monitoring and sex crimes is unfolding as we speak after the Supreme Court of the United States ordered that the man's case be reviewed by lower courts.

The case deals with a man who has twice been accused and convicted of sex crimes over the course of a decade (1996 and 2006 are when the offense occurred). The man is not arguing the convictions -- rather, he is arguing that a ruling by a lower court to have him under GPS monitoring 24 hours a day for the rest of his life is inhumane and a violation of his Fourth Amendment rights.

Numerous decisions by lower courts upheld the 24-hours-a-day, 7-days-a-week monitoring decision, but eventually the man's case made it to the U.S. Supreme Court, which determined that a lower court must have a fresh look at the extreme monitoring being imposed on the man. The man also noted that the ankle bracelet he wears requires four to six hours of charging per day to be in working order. That's a long time for someone to just stand or sit near an outlet.

The ultimate decision in the case won't be known for some time, but this brings up the matter of punishment fitting the crime, yet again. Look, everyone is in agreement that sex crimes are terrible offenses that have a lot of physical and emotional factors involved. Those who are guilty of this crime deserve to be punished.

But does round-the-clock monitoring for the rest of a sex offender's life really do any good? Is that really the standard we want to set for punishment in these cases?

Source: Courthouse News Service, "Sex Offender's Future Monitoring Faces Review," Dan McCue, March 30, 2015

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