Thursday, April 17, 2014

CO - Former Longmont officer (Christopher Martinchick) sentenced

Christopher Martinchick
Christopher Martinchick
Original Article

04/15/2014

FORT COLLINS - A former Longmont police officer who admitted to the attempted sexual assault of a woman in Loveland was sentenced Tuesday to eight years of sex offender intensive supervised probation.

Christopher Martinchick, 43, also must register as a sex offender and was ordered to serve six months in jail on work release.

Martinchick pleaded guilty in 8th Judicial District Court in November 2013 to attempted sexual assault, a class 5 felony, and invasion of privacy for sexual gratification, a misdemeanor.

Martinchick was arrested last July following a Larimer County Sheriff's Office investigation into a reported sexual assault that occurred in Loveland. The adult female victim told police that on two separate occasions, Martinchick engaged in sexual activity with her while she was sleeping and under the influence of a prescribed muscle relaxant.

Sexual images taken without the woman's consent while she was sleeping were found on computers and a cellphone that the sheriff's office searched as part of the investigation.

Conditions of the sex offender intensive supervised probation include that Martinchick must comply with any counseling or substance abuse treatment as recommended, have no contact with anyone under the age of 18 other than his own children, register as a sex offender and have no contact with the victim.

Martinchick must report for work release within 14 days. He will also serve two years supervised probation concurrent with the sex offender intensive supervised probation.



Wednesday, April 16, 2014

KY - LMPD detective (Carl Payne) charged over dirty texts, soliciting sex

Carl Payne
Carl Payne
Original Article

04/15/2014

By Mark Boxley

Louisville Metro Police Detective Carl Payne was charged with three counts of first-degree official misconduct Monday over allegations he propositioned three women for sex after arresting them in exchange for assisting them with their court cases, according to a Jefferson County criminal summons.

Carl Payne, 38, of Elizabethtown, was placed under investigation by the department’s Public Integrity Unit in February, the Courier-Journal previously reported.

The charges filed against him Monday allege that from March 20, 2013 to Jan. 2, 2014 Payne — a member of the department’s Violent Incident Prevention, Enforcement and Response (VIPER) Unit — contacted three women after arresting them and “propositioned each of them for sex and encouraged sexually explicit text messages and photographs from the victims in return for assisting them with court cases,” the summons said.

Payne has been on administrative reassignment since Feb. 7, LMPD spokesman Dwight Mitchell said.

Lt. Kit Steimle, who led the VIPER Unit, is also under investigation and has been on administrative reassignment since Feb. 24, Mitchell said.

Police have not said if the two investigations are related.

This is not the first time Payne has been under investigation with the department, according to his personnel file. On June 20, 2013, an investigation was opened after he was arrested for operating a motor vehicle under the influence in Hardin County on June 19, according to a document in his personnel file.

He was suspended without pay for 20 days from the police department. His charges became effective Oct. 3 and he was restored to police powers on November 25, 2013.

He was also reprimanded for missing four court appearances in 2007.

According to the summons, Payne arrested the first victim on March 27, 2013, and soon after contacted the woman by phone, sending her “numerous sexually explicit text messages.” During one conversation, Payne asked the woman to meet him at his office late at night, saying “if she helped him out, he could help her out,” referring to her court case, it said.

The second incident started on Dec. 11, 2013, when Payne arrested a woman and her boyfriend, according to the summons. While the boyfriend was in the front seat of Payne’s police car, he was in the back with the woman typing her messages on his phone for her to read, it said. One told her she was attractive, asked why she was with her boyfriend. Another message asked for her phone number, according to the summons.

Payne is also accused of putting his phone number in the second woman’s purse and told her to call him “so that he could help her with her court case,” the summons said. When she was released from jail she contacted him thinking he could help her, but he started sending her “explicit text messages,” the summons said.

Payne appeared in court on the woman’s case and had it continued on Dec. 15, 2013, which is when she told her attorney about his communications, it said.

Payne arrested the third woman and her boyfriend on April 25, 2013, the summons said. He started contacting her on Dec. 18, 2013, allegedly sending her explicit text messages and photos of his genitalia, it said. He also asked her to meet with him in exchange for helping her and her boyfriend with their court cases and offered to have gun and drug charges against her dismissed, the summons said.

Additional information was not immediately available from LMPD on any departmental actions against Payne stemming from Monday’s charges.



FL - Law enforcement still hiding public records on sex busts

Investigator
Original Article

04/15/2014

By Noah Pransky

PINELLAS COUNTY - Following another major bust of suspects accused of seeking sex with underage children, 10 Investigates renewed its public records requests into how law enforcement operates its stings. But again, multiple agencies are refusing to turn over documents, casting doubt over whether they're playing by the rules.

In January, 10 Investigates revealed that officers and deputies may not have followed federal guidelines in trying to lure sexual predators during a sting. Numerous agencies refused to turn over public records.

But it's not just the lack of transparency casting doubt over the January sting, which resulted in 35 arrests. Attorneys tell 10 Investigates they believe the majority of the men have yet to even be charged, three months after their arrests.

The Pinellas County Sheriff's Office, Pasco County Sheriff's Office, Clearwater Police Department, and FDLE have all cited various public record exemptions in their refusals to turn over records from the January sting, while the Manatee Co. Sheriff's Office has refused to turn over records from similar stings.

10 Investigates will continue to fight for access to public records.



CA - When sex-offender laws promote more crimes

Crime scene tapeOriginal Article

04/15/2014

National City has become the latest California city to face a lawsuit from a registered San Luis Obispo County sex offender over its sex-offender regulations. Frank Lindsay, 61, of Grover Beach, contends such local ordinances are superseded by Jessica’s Law, the 2006 measure adopted by California voters.

Among the provisions of Jessica’s Law is a prohibition on registered sex offenders living within 2,000 feet of any school or park. It was named for Jessica Lunsford, a Florida girl who was raped and murdered by a previously convicted sex offender.

Many communities, including National City, have adopted even more restrictive laws of their own. With the assistance of attorney Janice Bellucci — who says society must accept that sex offenders still have civil liberties — Lindsay has been making headway in going after these laws. In January, a state appellate court struck down separate measures adopted by Irvine and Orange County that required sex offenders to gain formal government permission before entering city or county parks. “The state intended to fully occupy the field of regulating registered sex offenders,” the appeals court ruled.

But instead of fighting Lindsay’s lawsuit, National City and other local cities that face similar challenges need a moment of clarity: What do they hope to achieve with sex-offender regulations?

Is the goal making sex offenders’ lives as miserable as possible? Or is it to reduce the likelihood that they will commit new sex crimes?

If it is the former, then fighting for Megan’s Law and even stricter local ordinances makes sense. If the goal is the latter, then these laws make no sense at all.

Setting up residency restrictions that make it difficult and in some cases impossible for sex offenders to stay with their families and to find work “contradicts decades of criminological research identifying factors associated with successful offender reintegration” into society, according to University of Louisville professor Richard Tewksbury and other authorities on sex-offender rehabilitation.

The released sex offender with a job, stable housing and supportive people in his life is far less a threat to the community than a sex offender who is a jobless transient kept from his family.

We understand where National City Mayor Ron Morrison is coming from when he told a U-T reporter that he hoped his city’s ordinance stayed in place: “If you are a registered predatory sex offender on children, I am sorry, you don’t get all your rights.”

We suspect the vast majority of the public shares this sentiment, which is why Jessica’s Law passed in a landslide. We also understand why folks would bristle at Bellucci’s characterization of this issue as being about civil liberties.

But if the goal is to avoid more tragedies like Jessica Lunsford’s, Californians need to think clearly and get past the bluster and demagoguery sometimes seen on public-safety issues. If existing laws make sex crimes more likely, they should be changed.



TX - Dublin passes its first sex offender ordinance

Police Chief Shawn Fullagar
Police Chief Shawn Fullagar
Original Article

04/15/2014

By JESSIE HORTON

Residents of Dublin have lived for years without a sex offender ordinance, but not anymore. On Monday the Dublin City Council heard from residents and Police Chief Shawn Fullagar on the issue.

Fullagar said when he discovered the city was without a sex offender ordinance, he began researching other cities with sex offender ordinances and policies in place. Armed with the information, Fullagar drew up an ordinance he and City Administrator Nancy Wooldridge presented to the council.

"When I discovered the city did not have an ordinance involving these situations I set about doing some research and working one up to present because your city administrator and I believed we needed one," Fullagar said. "I looked at ordinances in Coppell, Alpine, Stephenville, Keller and Carrollton. I wanted to make sure we got everything we needed covered, covered, without going too far."

The ordinance is similar to Stephenville's, restricting a sex offender's ability to live or own property within 500 feet of a school, public park, daycare center or other place where children gather.

The ordinance does not require sex offenders already living or owning property within those limitations to sell the property or move. Fullagar said of the nine to 11 sex offenders living within the Dublin city limits, none are currently living within 500 feet of those locations.

The ordinance restricts where sex offenders can be, and who they can communicate with. For example, the ordinance Fullagar recommended prohibits sex offenders from being within 500 feet of any event, meeting, celebration or gathering where minors are present.

"Another component of the ordinance will make it unlawful for a sex offender to approach a minor on the sidewalk, street, in any public area including local businesses and public buildings like the library," he said. "All of these components apply to all children or minors except those minors who are the offender's own children. The goal of this ordinance is to protect the children of Dublin, not to restrict people from being good parents to their children."

One resident, _____, spoke in regards to the ordinance. He admitted that at 19 he made a mistake. _____ said his life is different now and asked the council to consider an ordinance that allows him to continue being a part of his eight-year-old son's life.

"I know I made a mistake and I'm not trying to get around that," _____ told the council. "All I'm asking is that you make sure there is a way I can continue to be a part of my children's lives, that I can continue to support them as they grow and participate in local events."

Fullagar assured council members the ordinance would not limit parents like _____ from attending their children's events. He did say when at those events, any offender there to support their child cannot make contact with other minors.

"The maximum consequence for a city ordinance violation is a citation for $500," he said. "However, if the subject warrants contact from an officer in these situations, it could escalate into something more. But this ordinance would only be a citation."

After the discussion, council member Mac McMullen said he had reservations about voting for an ordinance that was "trying to regulate morality."

"I just have a problem voting in favor of an ordinance that would be, in effect, regulating the morality of others," McMullen said.

Fullagar said he didn't see it that way.

"I see it more like there are people in our community who have committed crimes involving minors," he said. "I see this as keeping those minors in our community away from someone who has committed such a crime."

Following a lengthy discussion, the council passed the measure 4-2 with McMullen and John Johnson voting against it.