Special Article: Adverse effects of hysteria

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Moral panics pertaining to children, sexuality and minor-attracted persons have many unintended or otherwise negative consequences, especially for minors. This page uses just a few news sources to verify its claims. Other sites, for example, SOI (general) and Eadvocate (database of suicides and murders) have documented many of these consequences, and we will link to them when further reading may be appropriate.

Abuse of authority

We have listed examples of this consequence on a separate page.

False accusations

Worship of satan, blood libel, "Recovered Memory"

This is a particularly insidious form of moral panic. NewsStand has a lot of articles on "Satanic Panic".

Botched child pornography investigations

As documented by Inquisition 21, Operation Ore continues to be uncovered as a large scale injustice.

As an easy handle for state intervention

In March, 2009, NAMbLA were accused by the New York Post and MSNBC of putting a $10,000 bounty on the head of Attorney General Andrew Cuomo. This followed an anonymous posting on usenet, made by someone claiming to represent NAMbLA, whilst advertising "$10,000 to shoot Andrew Cuomo in the face!". Apparently unaware or ignorant of the fact that such claims are made frequently, and in similar mocking-tones on newsgroups, where NAMbLA is the butt of numerous jokes, American authorities used this threat as the launchpad for a criminal investigation, inspiring gutter press journalists to defame a virtually defunct and cash-strapped organisation that would have been able to sue against such claims if it had $10,000 at its disposal. [1][2][3][4]

Sexism

"My friend, a Latin woman, has such fear of pedophiles that she will not let any teacher help out in the bathroom at day care with her toddler girls. No change of diapers, no change of clothing, and no help with toilet visits. It must be a woman, otherwise inappropriate things could happen. Apparently, any male might be a pedophile. Every other parent is fine with the male employees helping out but she refuses to change her mind."

BlogFathers - "Dealing With (Irrational?) Fear Of Pedophiles" - Aug 14, 2008

Unconstitutionality

"Residency restrictions, unconstitutional laws that bar sex offenders from living in a specified area, are on the rise [...] Twenty-two states have prohibited sex offenders from living within a minimum distance of family facilities, such as schools and day-care centers. The distance ranges from 500 feet to five times that. And further restrictions are on the way. [...] The more crucial problem, though, is that residency restrictions clearly violate the constitutional limits on statutory law. Article I, Section 9 of the United States Constitution reads in part: "No bill, or attainder, or ex post facto law shall be passed." The Latin phrase "ex post facto" literally translates as "from after the fact." The Founding Fathers wisely realized that law must not be retroactive. [...] Most state laws require their state to build schools and family facilities according to the population of a constituency. Therefore, inevitably a case arises when changes in demographics require construction of a school within the restricted range of a convicted child sex offender. We may feel no sympathy when an ex-convict is forced to sell his home because of it, but this practice is retroactive punishment."

C. Alexander Evans in Christian Science Monitor, August 14, 2008 - "Protecting our kids – or jeopardizing everyone's freedom?"

"In a 6-1 decision, written by Justice Robert Benham, the court said the life sentence imposed upon 26-year-old Cedric Bradshaw of Statesboro violates the Eighth Amendment’s guarantee against cruel and unusual punishment. “We conclude the imposition of a sentence of life imprisonment is so harsh in comparison to the crime for which it was imposed that it is unconstitutional,” Benham wrote."

Bill Rankin on Ajc.com, August 14, 2008 - "Court strikes down life sentence for sex offender"

"Pleading to seduction as Fawcett did in 2002 meant his name would not appear on the sex-offender list. But changes last year require those who pleaded guilty to seduction to appear on the list, said the county's Chief Deputy Prosecutor Deborah Carley. [...] His parents called it a devastating blow to their son.The[sic] state enacted New Laws and applied them Retroactively, which is against the United States Constitution. His parents said it was wrong to for the state to break an agreement, their plea agreement, and do this to their son.They said they believe the plea agreement he made two years ago should stand."[5]
""For over a decade the government has been trying to thwart freedom of speech on the Internet, and for years the courts have been finding the attempts unconstitutional," Chris Hansen, senior staff attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), said in a statement. "It is not the role of the government to decide what people can see and do on the Internet. Those are personal decisions that should be made by individuals and their families.""[6]

Broad sweep registries

When the same overbearing restrictions are applied to minor offenses (public urination, "statutory rape", etc), we simultaneously undermine the magnitude of serious crimes and impose cruel and unusual punishments on less serious offenders. See SOR problems.

Homelessness

This is a widely acknowledge result of Jessica's Law and almost certainly increases the rate of offending.

"Reporting from Sacramento -- A state panel is urging the governor and legislators to change "Jessica's Law," saying its restrictions on where sex offenders can live are counterproductive and calling the nearly $25 million a year spent to house them a poor use of taxpayers' money. The residency restrictions, passed by voters more than two years ago in Proposition 83, have never been shown to prevent new crimes and may reduce public safety, the panel says. Since 70% of voters approved the initiative, "the availability of suitable housing has plummeted," the state's Sex Offender Management Board said in a report sent to lawmakers this week. The state previously had more modest residency limits that applied only to certain sex offenders. Jessica's Law expanded the restrictions to all sex offenders and greatly reduced the locations where they could reside. Barring sex offenders from living within 2,000 feet of schools, parks and other areas where children gather has driven many into homelessness, an unstable situation that can propel them back to crime, according to the board. State corrections officials say they find housing and pay rent for about 800 who are on parole, but they cannot house them all; the number of homeless sex offenders on parole is 12 times as large as it was when the law was passed."[7]

Unenforcible and expensive laws

" By now it should be apparent that California voters made a serious mistake when they passed Proposition 83, the 2006 ballot initiative popularly known as Jessica's law. The law requires lifetime monitoring of sex offenders -- not only those charged with child sexual abuse and rapists whose victims were adults, but also those convicted of consensual sex with a teenager and even misdemeanor indecent exposure. It bars offenders from living within 2,000 feet of a school or park. By the end of 2007, it was obvious that the law was a failure. Almost no local police agencies in California were enforcing it, partly because it was unenforceable and partly because even trying to enforce it proved prohibitively expensive. [...] In practice, as the Times reported, it has led to the state contracting with 79 psychologists and psychiatrists to do the evaluations. Last year, 14 of them billed the state more than a half-million dollars apiece for those services. One billed the state for more than $1.5 million in 2007. Such payments to contractors might be worthwhile if the evaluations were producing clear benefits. But it isn't. The evaluations were supposed to be used to determine if sex offenders should be committed to a mental hospital after serving their sentences. But the Times found that the number of commitments was essentially the same for the 18-month periods before and after voters approved the law."

Merced Sun-Star, "Our View: Time to repeal Jessica's law", Aug. 14, 2008

"URBANA – A Champaign County judge refused Friday to reduce the 48-year prison sentence of a former Urbana teacher convicted of child molestation. [...] Clem sentenced White in early April on eight counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse to which White pleaded guilty in February. White admitted that he had eight blindfolded girls, about ages 7 to 9, lick sauces off a banana for his own sexual gratification [...] White's actions have already spurred several lawsuits against him and the Urbana and McLean county school districts by the parents of the girls. So far, two victims have reached settlements with Urbana District 116 of $390,000 and $300,000 in present-day cash. Another for $250,000 is expected to be approved by a judge later this month. The way the settlements are structured, the girls may end up receiving more than $1 million each over the course of their lives.""

[8]

Psychic intervention

It is an unfortunate truth that in an area of life often ridden with superstition, coercive "recovery" of traumatic memories and iatrogenesis profiteers, psychic mediums have been allowed to gain ground.

"A psychic who called upon the dead to expose a paedophile who preyed on girls as young as nine today said: "Justice has been done." Using his mystic powers Patrick Hutchinson sensed a 20-year-old woman's demons from her childhood and helped her confront her abuser for the first time. After a five-and-a-half-day trial a Leeds Crown Court jury yesterday convicted her tormentor Terrance Dunstan, 61, of five charges of indecently assaulting three girls aged from nine to 11 between 1997 and 2001. CLICK PLAY TO SEE VIDEO OF TERRANCE DUNSTAN LEAVE LEEDS CROWN COURT YESTERDAY ON BAIL AHEAD OF SENTENCING."

[9]

"A Barrie mother of an autistic girl is considering legal action against her local school board after a psychic's prediction to a special educational assistant sparked a sexual abuse report to the Children's Aid Society. "I'm in shock," said Colleen Leduc, 38. "They reported me to Children's Aid because of a psychic. Can you imagine?" The damaging allegations were resolved by child welfare authorities relatively quickly, but the case highlights the difficult and sometimes clumsy outcome of zero-tolerance policies and mandatory reporting regulations regarding child sexual abuse."

[10]

Banning of children & child photography

This can be seen in multiple news stories, e.g.

"Children could be barred from joining sports and hobby clubs because of the increasing burden of red tape, campaigners fear. Organisations which run activities for youngsters are already struggling to recruit volunteers because they must undergo criminal records checks. But when a new child protection database is introduced next year - which one in four adults will have to sign at a cost of £64 each - it is feared that many groups which admit members of all ages will decide it is cheaper and simpler to exclude children. Campaigners say this will leave teenagers unable to take part in activities which are good for their development, and makes a mockery of Government attempts to crack down on youth obesity and anti-social behaviour [...] "Some clubs have closed their doors to children, and that's a real shame."

[11]

"FEAR of paedophiles on the internet has prompted Scots sports chiefs to warn parents and coaches not to photograph young athletes in their gym gear. Controversial new advice from governing body Scottish Gymnastics says photographs of youngsters should only be taken if they are wearing tracksuits."

[12]

"Netball, basketball, rugby league, AFL, cricket, soccer and baseball clubs have imposed rules to prevent photos of young players being taken without the consent of all parents and coaches. NSW's Macarthur junior baseball league president Maud Goldfinch said parents had to sign a form confirming they would not take photographs without permission. Ms Goldfinch said that as a parent, she did not agree with the policy, which deprived children of happy sporting memories. "

[13]

" Parents are now banned from taking photographs of their own children at most family venues across Lincolnshire, new research has revealed. There are picture bans in places ranging from North Kesteven Sports Centre in North Hykeham to Crazee Bongos indoor play area in Sleaford. An Echo survey shows that even Superbowl bowling alley in Lincoln stops parents from capturing magical childhood moments."

[14]

"When Gary Crutchley started taking pictures of his children playing on an inflatable slide he thought they would be happy reminders of a family day out. But the innocent snaps of seven-year-old Cory, and Miles, five, led to him being called a ‘pervert’. The woman running the slide at Wolverhampton Show asked him what he was doing and other families waiting in the queue demanded that he stop. One even accused him of photographing youngsters to put the pictures on the internet."

[15]

Banning of contact

"Tough new guidelines on "good" touching and "bad" touching are now in place for anyone who has contact with children within the Archdiocese of Cincinnati. For example, "side hugs" are allowed but "bear hugs" are considered prohibited physical contact." [...] "It is really sad, but it’s necessary in the culture in which we're living," said Andriacco. [...] "The decree prohibits physical contact that is considered "inappropriate." Any form of unwanted affection [...] Inappropriate, forceful or lengthy embraces and/or "bear hugs" [...] Kisses [...] Lap-sitting [...] Touching buttocks, chest, knees, thighs or genital areas [...] Placing hands in the pockets of al child [...] Showing affection in isolated areas such as bedrooms, closets, adult-only or staff-only areas [...] Laying down, cuddling or sleeping near a child [...] Being in bed with a child [...] Wrestling [...] Tickling [...] Piggyback rides [...] Massage given by an adult to a child [...] Massage given by a child to an adult"

"Archdiocese Enacts New "Touching" Guidelines", kypost.com, 11/08/08

"LIBRARY staff have been warned not to put children on their knees during story times for fear they will be branded paedophiles. Staff have also been told not to "lead a child by the hand" out of the library to look for a missing parent under a new policy introduced by education chiefs. As well as protecting employees from "vulnerable situations", the policy also warns librarians to keep an eye out for potential paedophiles and to ask adults acting suspiciously near a children's area or activity to move on or leave. Library staff will be told to refrain from physical contact where possible, even when they are trying to comfort a distressed or injured child."

[16]

"It's an everyday drama at primary schools up and down the country - but according to London teacher Kate Abley, a child wetting himself in the classroom is no longer a molehill, it's a mountain. "One male teacher refused to change children - he'd get other teachers to do it," says Abley. "Another teacher would call the child's mother to come in and deal with it." Those teachers who were prepared to change a child's wet pants were supposed to take another adult into the changing rooms, to keep an eye on them. "The whole thing was completely impractical." There's a growing panic among childcare professionals about touching young children in their care which, says a group of academics at Manchester Metropolitan University's Institute of Education, is causing concern and uncertainty about what's OK and what's not when it comes to innocent physical contact with youngsters. In research they are planning to publish later this year, academics Heather Piper, John Powell and Hannah Smith describe how some child carers are reluctant even to put a plaster on a child's scraped knee. Very young children have to treat their injuries themselves - with the nursery worker or teacher giving instructions on how to open the box, take out a plaster and stick it on. If a child's parent is nearby, he or she is summoned to deal with the injury. Piper describes it as a crazy situation. "Many people are behaving in completely ludicrous ways. What is cast into doubt is the process of normal nurturing - the way adults are with children." Comforting a child when they're upset, putting a plaster on them, changing their wet pants - all these everyday ways in which adults care for young children are now seen as suspect. "Children are used to being cared for by adults, being picked up and having somebody put their plasters on. If they go to places where adults don't touch them, this must be quite horrifying," says Piper - she cited the example from one playgroup in her research where there was "no touch that was caring at all"."

[17]

"Many adults are afraid to interact with children for fear of being labelled as paedophiles, a report has claimed. Think-tank Civitas said the "escalation of child protection measures" had made everyone from sports coaches to Santas seem like "potential child abusers". The Home Office said there was no evidence that vetting had deterred volunteers or eroded trust. It plans to tighten the rules further, so all parents hosting foreign exchange students will face background checks. In its report, Licensed to Hug, Civitas said that child protection regulations had "succeeded in poisoning the relationship between the generations". While in the past, adults would have helped children in distress or rebuked those misbehaving, there was now "a feeling that it is best not to become involved", it said. Report author Prof Frank Furedi, of Kent University, said: "From Girl Guiders to football coaches, from Christmas-time Santas to parents helping out in schools, volunteers - once regarded as pillars of the community - have been transformed in the regulatory and public imagination into potential child abusers, barred from any contact with children until the database gives them the green light."

[18]

"SALISBURY -- Few events in a person's life have the ability to completely destroy them. But an accusation of child sex abuse, true or not, can ruin careers, families and reputations. In the past two years, an estimated 270 accusations of child sex abuse have occurred in the county. Of the 92 felony child abuse cases that went to trial during that time, only two ended in not guilty verdicts -- verdicts that won't wipe the slate clean. [...] Boy Scouts of America requires adult leaders to have a background check and to go through an hourlong course that reviews policies and practices, such as adults not sleeping in the same tent as a boy and how to handle a situation when a child tells you another adult has made him feel uncomfortable. The Salvation Army requires a background check, and all coaches and volunteers are required to watch a video on working with children, said Mark Thompson, a Salisbury Salvation Army director who serves as school board vice president. Generally, many organizations and youth leaders have instituted a buddy system when it comes to working with minors. "You shouldn't be alone with other people's children," said Michelle Hughes, the Life Crisis Center executive director. "It's not like years ago when teachers could identify a kid that needed a little extra and take him home for dinner. It's not like that anymore." [...] "No adult can be alone with boys," Wright said. "It must be two." In addition to avoiding being alone with a child, individuals who work with children should be careful not to cross the boundaries of the working relationship, said Thompson. "Be sure that you understand that you are the adult and they are the children," Thompson said. He cautioned adults who work with children to be careful of how you touch them, and to watch out for signs and sharing personal information. "It's not illegal to show genuine affection for a child," Ruark said. "But if it goes beyond that ... adults need to be cognizant of that. When you get to the point where you are touching inappropriately, even unintentional, that creates concern. Just make sure you understand where the lines are concerning friendship or expressions of love for a child." Thompson also cautioned workers who interact with children to keep close tabs on their emotions. Don't get caught up in the feeling that someone needs you or someone loves you. "You always have to have it in the back of your mind that they are the child," Thompson said. "You must always keep boundaries clear in the back of your mind. No matter how much interest that child shows in you. You can't let yourself get carried away in the moment.".

[19]

"An Australian school has banned hugging and other displays of affection between pre-teen boys and girls in order to set a good example for younger students. Largs Bay Primary School in the southern city of Adelaide said the policy is aimed at grade six and seven students, aged 11 to 12."

[20]

Confinement and obesity

"Last week I wrote a column for my newspaper, The New York Sun, titled, "Why I Let My 9-Year-Old Ride The Subway." It basically said that I let him do this because he wanted to take a trip solo, he knew how to read the map, and I had every confidence that he could find his way home. Two days later, said son and I found ourselves on the Today Show, MSNBC and FoxNews [...] My vision of the world, especially childrearing, turns out to be starkly at odds with the mainstream one, which believes that the world (especially New York) is chock-a-block with extras from "Saw III." [...] Okay, so it happened several time zones away and the station has been flogging this same awful story for three months. Does it occur to most viewers that a crime like this must be pretty rare, if the station has to talk about one as far away as, say, Portugal? Or Aruba? No! [...] I met a guy at a party last week who makes his daughter phone home after walking one block to her friend's house. And he's in a suburb. The leafy kind! [...] The fact that a child is literally forty times more likely to die in a car accident than at a stranger's hands makes no difference. Driving is seen as safe. Freedom - once a right of childhood -- is seen as suicidal."

Lenore Skenazy, More From America's Worst Mom: 9-Year-Old On The Subway, Continued, Huffington Post, April 10, 2008

Violent/premature death

Suicide

Unaffiliated site: SOI/Suicide

The number of suicides and murders that have taken place as a result of SORs and general sex-offender panic run well into the hundreds and are hard to document. Bill Conradt - a man who was effectively hounded to death by a TV crew is perhaps the best known example of this.

"In the Bay Area alone, five defendants facing child-porn charges have committed suicide over the past two years. This year, on the eve of a court appearance on child-porn charges in the spring, one of the defendants, Los Gatos businessman George Halldin was found dead in his car inside a burning warehouse. Authorities ruled it a suicide."

[21]

"A RESPECTED Perth school-teacher committed suicide within hours of being charged with child sex offences. Jeff Cahill, 48, was the head of science at Carmel School, a Jewish college in Dianella. He was a finalist last year for the esteemed $50,000 Premier's Prize for Excellence in Secondary Science Teaching. Mr Cahill took his life on Friday, June 6, after detectives searched his home the previous day and charged him with child sex offences. Police were investigating allegations about sexual activities with a 15-year-old boy he met on the internet [...] Mr Cahill was well-respected in education circles and had written papers used to develop WA's high school science curriculum. A police source told The Sunday Times the boy went to Mr Cahill's Mt Lawley home on Sunday, May 11, where they engaged in sex. [...] It is alleged that though the sex was agreed to by both parties, it was illegal because the boy was under the age of consent."

[22]

"Darren Philpott said he was afraid of being harmed by other inmates, and he had good reason for his fears. He was assaulted at least once, attacked by another inmate while at a court appearance in Regina, and he had to be kept in segregation at the Regina Provincial Correctional Centre for his safety. The months that followed Philpott's arrest would see him rapidly and visibly deteriorating, appearing increasingly haggard during his appearances in court, and looking ever more grim as additional charges were laid and the spectre of his future loomed large. [...] Having already attempted to kill himself at least once while in custody, Philpott was on suicide watch, where inmates are checked by guards every 15 minutes and are barred from having items such as razors and pop cans, which they could use to harm themselves. In late August or early September, Philpott hanged himself in his cell. His heart had stopped when he was discovered by correctional officers and cut down from the ceiling, but he was revived with CPR and made an almost miraculous recovery. Then, on the evening of Sept. 24, left alone behind a closed door to shower, Philpott hanged himself again. Sources say he used a bedsheet to hang himself from a pipe, and he was blue and unconscious by the time he was discovered by guards."

[23]

"A QUEENSLAND teacher has committed suicide and another was taken to hospital after they were charged as part of Australia's largest anti-pedophile investigation. More than 90 men across Australia have been arrested or summonsed to court over the child porn sweep, including an Australian Federal Police officer, four teachers, youth workers, bankers and company directors, The Australian reports."

[24]

"TAMPA - Tuesday was going to be Cody Lee Liberty's day of reckoning. In June 2005, the 26-year-old Iraq War veteran was arrested on 11 felony charges of possessing child pornography. On Tuesday he would go to court. He could plea bargain and suffer the brand of being a registered pedophile for the rest of his life. Or he could fight the charge and risk up to 55 years in jail. "I feel I'm backed into a corner and have to plead guilty, but I DID NOT commit the crimes," Mr. Liberty wrote on his MySpace Web site last Friday. The next evening, while Gasparilla festivities filled Tampa's streets, he killed himself."

[25]

"A FORMER languages teacher who worked for UCAS drowned himself because he feared his interest in child porn websites would be discovered, an inquest heard. Administrator at the university admissions service Graham Jowett, 60, had developed an "unhealthy interest in paedophilia" and felt guilty about it, his GP told an inquest in Gloucester. "He said he had drifted into internet paedophilic websites and photographs and he was very concerned his employers might find out about this," said Dr Alexander Owen." (...) "He asserted his belief that his interest in these images was innocent and he would never harm a child. "In my opinion he was a sensitive and slightly vulnerable individual who had developed an unhealthy interest in paedophilia." The inquest heard that before committing suicide in the River Severn, Mr Jowett destroyed his home computer and posted the key of his house to his brother. (...) He was found dead in the river by a canoeist at Wainlodes on June 17."

"UCAS worker's child porn shame, thisisgloucestershire.co.uk", Sunday, July 05, 2009

Murder

"A man found stabbed to death in south London was a convicted child sex offender, it has been revealed. Andrew Cunningham, 52, was found dead in his caravan in Riverside Road, in Wandsworth, on Wednesday. A post-mortem examination said the cause of death was multiple wounds including mutilation to the groin." // "A paedophile was hacked to death in a frenzied assault by a suspected mob of vigilantes. Andrew Cunningham, 52, was found naked and soaked in blood at his caravan home after suffering multiple stab wounds to his head, neck and chest [...] Recently, drinkers at a pub claimed he had assaulted another girl. This allegation was never reported to police but mobs reportedly drove past his caravan chanting: 'Die, paedo, die.' Cunningham moved there because vigilantes had set fire to a bag of rubbish outside his former house in Wandsworth in 2003. [...] A police source said detectives were focusing on recent incidents rather than his earlier conviction. He added: 'Damage was caused to his genitals. He was loathed by a large number of people so we have a lot of potential suspects.' Yesterday Wazir Zadran, 23, a worker at a nearby fish factory, said: 'I heard it was a planned attack. Everyone knew he lived there and was a paedophile.' [...] Cunningham's body was found by his employer, known as Rodney, who said: 'There was blood everywhere. The bed was soaked and his head was lying in it.' He added: 'He was a lovely man, he couldn't do enough for me.' But yesterday there was little sympathy from motorists passing the scene, with one van driver shouting: 'He deserved it.' However, a bunch of flowers was laid by a 15-year-old called Lucy. She said: 'I used to go round his caravan instead of going to school. He never laid a finger on me. He told me to go back to school.' The teenager, who was accompanied by her father, later made a statement to police. A tag on her flowers read: 'To Andy, the best man alive no matter what people say. Me and the family will miss you. May you rest in peace.'"

[26] // [27]

"VICTORIA -- The sexual touching allegations that provoked the beating death of a Courtenay man this week lacked credibility and may have been fabricated, police said yesterday. Comox RCMP Inspector Tom Gray said a follow-up investigation of the allegations, made by two girls aged 13 and 15 who had been "hanging out" at the victim's house, found no evidence of any wrongdoing. "We're not so sure the people [the teenage girls] making these allegations are credible," said Insp. Gray, noting that RCMP detectives had interviewed the girls at length. "The issue, in my view, was somewhat consensual and in any event it didn't go very far. I just don't want anyone in the public to think the [slaying] victim did anything bad or anything to deserve this.""

Brennan Clarke, Slaying provoked by false accusation, police say, Globeandmail.com, October 2, 2008

"A convicted pedophile represented everyone who had ever abused the young Adelaide man who killed him in a primal rage, a court was told today. Timothy Hemi Schaefer, 19, went to the home of Jeffrey Edwin Payne, 56, in Adelaide in April 2007, called him a "pedo", punched him and stabbed him in the leg. [...] "In fact, during his interview with police he referred to Mr Payne as a sack of shit," Ms Powell said. "He would have had to hear and feel the sounds of the bones fracturing under foot.""

[28]

"SANTA ANA – John Derek Chamberlain feared the inmates at Theo Lacy Facility in Orange knew he was in for child pornography charges, his longtime friend Dorothy Schell recalled Friday. "You've got to talk to my attorney to get me out of here," Schell said Chamberlain told her from a jail phone on Tuesday and Wednesday. "I'm afraid. I'm afraid. I'm really afraid. They know. They know. I'm afraid something is going to happen to me." He was right. A group of inmates beat and kicked Chamberlain to death in a shower Thursday night, Orange County Sheriff's spokesman Jim Amormino said."

[29]

State murder

Unaffiliated site: SOI/Death Penalty

Vigilante justice and rage

The Newshound category "Vigilantism" and SOI/Vigilantism are far more comprehensive.

A parents' committee in Ekaterinburg, a city of over a million people in the Urals, has decided to tackle the problem of paedophilia using their own methods. They have instigated a "reward for the head of a paedophile". They will award 100,000 rubles (roughly US$ 4,000) to anyone who helps hand a paedophile over to the police and 500,000 rubles (US$ 19,000) to anyone who kills or severely injures one. The first reward has already been given to Evgeny Ivin, a student, who detained a paedophile and thereby saved a nine-year-old girl from rape earlier this year. The aspect of the story which most worried the committee was the fact that, allegedly, three passers-by saw the crime being committed, before the fourth, Ivin, decided to intervene. The new award will, according to them, make ordinary citizens more attentive in such situations. The second, more substantial, award is destined for those who have been jailed for "dealing" with a paedophile. The committee insists that society turns away from such individuals, but their actions can be understood. The money, according to the committee, can be used to pay attorneys and for moral compensation that the government all too often doesn't provide."

Staff, Half a million for a paedophile's head, Russia Today, October 16, 2008

"A BLIND man who once acted as a lookout for a robbery yesterday walked from court after pleading guilty to stabbing a confessed pedophile. Raymond Cox - who has a list of criminal convictions 10 pages long - stabbed his neighbour after discovering he was a convicted child sex offender. The pair were drinking together when the neighbour confessed he had served time in prison for having sex with minors."

Georgie Pilcher, Man walks free after stabbing pedophile, AdelaideNow, October 04, 2008

"LEAFLETS naming a convicted sex offender and his victims have been distributed in Booragoon, prompting police to warn people against vigilante action. [...] The pamphlets were designed to look like official documentation with the WA Police and Neighbourhood Watch logos printed on them. [...] "We are concerned about this vigilante type action, said Senior Sergeant Paul van Noort, officer-in-charge of Palmyra police station. ``Quite clearly, it's not an official document but somebody has been distributing information about a potential sex offender and unfortunately it also lists names of innocent parties as well. ``That can be very distressing for the victim and also the families as well"

Nicole Cox, Perth Now, September 30, 2008

"Reputation is a hard thing to restore. One Puebloan is trying, however, after his neighborhood was plastered with fliers last week falsely stating he was a child sex offender. "I was very fortunate that most of my neighbors that I talked to thought it was a bunch of crap," the 67-year-old man who preferred not to be identified said Friday. "My wife and I went door-to-door to tell people that I am not a sexual offender. I wanted to make sure that people who have children in the neighborhood knew it was a bunch of crap." As many as 25 fliers were distributed in the victim's neighborhood between midnight Oct. 6 and 4:30 a.m. Oct. 7, according to police. The fliers were distributed under the guise of a neighborhood watch group. It stated that the victim was charged with sexual assault on a child and stressed children's safety. "Remember there is no cure for these people," the flier said. "Help each other by watching your neighbor's children . . . Protect the Children!"

NICK BONHAM, THE PUEBLO CHIEFTAIN October 18, 2008

"Martyn Croft, aged 31, was sentenced to seven-and-a-half years' imprisonment last month for repeatedly stabbing his father Brian during a violent confrontation over child porn. He drove to Kingsthorpe from Birmingham armed with an eight-inch kitchen knife in January, angry after discovering his father's interest in abusive images of children. After a violent confrontation in the early hours of January 24, he attacked his father in his bedroom, stabbing him 16 times in the back and chest, leaving him for dead."

[30]

"Everybody in this little mountain community knew that Timothy Chandler had been arrested on child pornography charges. It was in the newspaper and all over the TV news. Two of Chandler’s neighbors decided to do something about it, police say. They were accused of trying to scare him off by setting fire to his tiny house tucked away in a hardscrabble Appalachian hollow. Chandler, 53, escaped from the flames. But his wife was killed in what authorities were calling an example of vigilante justice. [...] “I really wish it wasn’t me who got out,” Chandler told Knoxville television station WBIR. “I wish it was her. She didn’t deserve that.” [...] The fire is one of many examples of suspected vigilantism against sex offenders, ranging from harassment and arson to more violent crimes. A Nova Scotia man used Maine’s sex offender registry last year to find and fatally shoot two registered sex offenders. Two convicted child rapists were killed in Washington state."

Police: Vigilante justice led to unintended death, MSNBC, Sept. 14, 2007

Police-supported

See also: To Catch a Predator.

""A dozen neighbors were so outraged by the rape of an 11-year-old girl that they chased a suspect and beat him, holding him until police arrived. Two of them were honored with an $11,500 police union reward even before the beaten man was charged in the girl's assault. Hailed by their community as heroes, none of the neighbors is being charged in the beating. "We put out a call to bring this savage beast off the street, and they stepped up," McNesby [LEO] said of the decision to hand out reward money Friday to Fernando Genval and David Vargas. "I think that these two guys did an outstanding job." Police distributed a photo of 27-year-old Jose Carrasquillo, calling him a person of interest in the case [...] They [locals] roughed up the first man they targeted — not Carrasquillo. Later, in an altercation caught by a store surveillance camera, they found and confronted Carrasquillo, beating him with their hands, feet and what appears on the videotape to be a board or a large stick. Carrasquillo was taken to a hospital in serious condition and was released into police custody two days later."

Philly case rekindles debate on vigilante justice, PATRICK WALTERS, AP, Jun 10, 2009

Criminalisation of youth

Unaffiliated site: ETAY

Society both infantilises and criminalises minors, making them easy prey for the justice system. An article has been established to put forth the argument against criminalising youth, using examples to support its case.

"Local law enforcement deals with sex offenders almost daily, but in the past couple of months, Zanesville police have dealt with one of the youngest cases officers can remember - an 11-year-old girl charged with three counts of rape. Detective Randy Ritchason said the girl had some type of sexual contact with three other children - two boys and a girl -all under the age of 10. She was charged in Muskingum County Juvenile Court."

Eleven-year-old girl charged with rape, Zanesville TimesRecorder, 13 Mar, 2009

Thoughtcrime and Newspeak

"A MAN who downloaded “Tomb Raider”-style pictures of computer-generated child pornography has been convicted by a Teesside jury. Robul Hoque had sophisticated realistic images of children on his hard drive seized by police in October 2006. The unusual case involving computer graphics is thought to be the first of its type and an important test case. Hoque, 32, told the Gazette: “I haven’t set out to break the law in any way, shape or form. “If I’d had any sort of inkling these were illegal, I would have told the police about them myself. I don’t go looking for child porn. I’m not attracted to kids. I’m not interested in kids.” [...] Jurors were told they should convict if they concluded that a picture looked like a photo. “It is about child pornography,” prosecutor David Brooke told the court [...] “Though no actual child has been abused, it helps to feed the demand.”"

[31]

"A Supreme Court judge in Australia has ruled that an internet cartoon in which look-a-like child characters from The Simpsons engage in sexual acts is child pornography." [...] But Justice Adams agreed with the magistrate, finding that while The Simpsons characters had hands with four fingers and their faces were "markedly and deliberately different to those of any possible human being", the mere fact that they were not realistic representations of human beings did not mean that they could not be considered people. Justice Adams said the purpose of the legislation was to stop sexual exploitation and child abuse where images are depicted of "real" children. However it was also to deter the production of other material, including cartoons, that could "fuel demand for material that does involve the abuse of children""

See [32], and another almost identical conviction "A MAN pleaded guilty yesterday to possessing child pornography after he downloaded images of characters from The Simpsons and Pokemon naked and performing sex acts on each other." [33]

"URBANA – A Champaign County judge refused Friday to reduce the 48-year prison sentence of a former Urbana teacher convicted of child molestation. [...] Clem sentenced White in early April on eight counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse to which White pleaded guilty in February. White admitted that he had eight blindfolded girls, about ages 7 to 9, lick sauces off a banana for his own sexual gratification [...] Olmstead argued 48 years was excessive given that the offenses did not involve actual sexual contact, that White never threatened or intimidated the girls, and that his conduct didn't cause or threaten physical harm. "The acts were made criminal because of what was in his mind, something they couldn't know," he said of the victims who played White's "tasting game." [...] Olmstead also argued White did not have any significant criminal history, that he accepted responsibility by pleading guilty, that evidence of psychological harm to the victims is lacking"

[34]

"A PAEDOPHILE tried to gag and tie up a man while he slept in his flat, a court heard. Vincent Burns, 69, invited his 26-year-old victim back to his home after drinking together in a city centre pub." [At no other place in this article is a justification given for labeling this man a pedophile]

[35]

"A judge sentenced former substitute teacher Eric Norman Olsen to five years in prison on Friday, calling him the first true pedophile she has seen in her years on the bench. [...] Uhler said she was inclined to give Olsen probation at first, but after reviewing his diagnostic report she had no choice but to send him to prison. "The defendant was a pedophile in the early stages," she said. "He is at high risk to re-offend." [...] He was arrested last July after allegations arose that he inappropriately touched young girls. Most of the contact involved children sitting on his lap. He told police the contact sexually aroused him. [...] She said a five-year sentence is "extremely lenient.""

[36]

Trojan horse censorship

"This [2009, Italian] list presents 287 internet sites currently censored by Italy. This quasi-voluntary system, which was introduced under the banner of fighting "child pornography" relies on a secret, unaccountable list of site names. Because of this lack of transparency, and the power of the censorship system, the blacklist is of intense interest. (...) The majority of sites on the Italian list seem to be unrelated to child pornography. While some do appear to relate to the images of teenagers, the vast majority of sites are related to what appears to be legal young-adult pornography. Some sites are unrelated to any type of pornography. These include businesses or institutes outside of Italy, and discussion forums, used by tens of thousands for all purposes. While it is possible these sites had an unauthorized user briefly upload an underage image or link to such an image, the continued presence of the sites on this list likely reflects the lack of any censorship notification or appeal mechanism."
Two high profile, legitimate sites for the minor-attracted community were found on this list (FPC.li and BoyWiki).

Italian secret internet censorship list, 287 site subset, 21 Jun 2009

"Finnish police are blocking more than 1,000 legal websites, including one belonging to a well-known internet activist, under a secretive system designed to prevent access to foreign sites that contain child pornography, according to a group that advocates for individual rights online. [...] Of the 700 or sites that have been tested, only two are known to contain inappropriate images of children, said Tapani Tarvainen chairman of the Electronic Frontier Finland (EFFI). The remainder tend to be sites with adult-oriented themes, such as those offering legal porn, and forums for gay sex. In some cases, the sites - which include an online doll store, a Thai Windows advice forum and a computer repair service - have no visible link to porn or sex at all."

Dan Goodin, Finland censors anti-censorship site, The Register, February 18 2008

"The police posted information that they would put TPB on the Swedish childporn filter. They never contacted us about the alleged child porn (which nobody found when looking for such content) and after heavy media critique the police caved in and said that TPB did not - any longer - have child porn on the site. Which of course, there was none to start with. Charges was filed about slander and for abusing the childporn filter for political means to JO but he decided that the police probably did their job and ‘had no reason not to trust the police officers testimony’. The police put the TPB associated website Kopimi.com in the child porn filter prior to this. Kopimi.com is of course not child porn either. After over 6 months in the filter a prosecutor stated that kopimi.com of course did not have any child porn (nor had ever had) and demanded that the filter was to be altered. The Swedish police had of course copied it’s filter to Norway and Denmark, aka rendering the site still filtered there after the Swedish filter was altered. It took another 3 months to get that sorted out, all the work we had to do. And no, we didn’t get an apology."

brokep, Punching bags, January 21st, 2008

The Virgin Killer controversies
Followed shortly by censorship of the Wayback machine - "85 billion page web history dating back to 1996" [37]

Draconian punishments

"The former supervisor of an American youth program was sentenced Friday to life in prison on 25 counts of lewd conduct and assault for sucking the toes of 20 boys. Trenton Veches, 32, will be eligible for parole in 15 years."

Associated Press, Toe-sucker gets life, July 12 2003

"In June 2002, Phoenix police arrested [Morton R.] Berger on a state warrant charging him with sexual exploitation of a minor. Specifically, he was charged with possession of 20 photographs depicting, among other things, children being raped by adults, children engaging in sexual acts with other children, and children in sexual acts with animals. The 20 images introduced at trial were part of a large collection of pornographic images accumulated over a period of at least six years. A jury found Berger guilty on 20 counts of sexually exploiting children under the age of 15 and sentenced him to 10 years on each count, the sentences to run consecutively. Last May the Arizona Supreme Court affirmed that judgment. [...] There is no evidence that he himself ever engaged in distributing, exhibiting, receiving, selling, purchasing, electronically transmitting or even "exchanging" pornographic images, all of which the Arizona law forbids. He was convicted solely of "possessing" such images. He collected them. These facts should weigh in your calculus, for good or ill: He is 52 years old, married, a father of four, an award-winning teacher of world history. He has no criminal record of any sort. The state offered no evidence that he has ever created pornography or improperly touched a minor."

Kilpatrick, James (2005). "Case of the 20 Dirty Pictures."

Imprisonment of "victims"

"The case of "Amy", a 12-year-old girl from California, is one blatant example of this institutional abuse. Amy's family sought counseling in California after Amy and her stepfather revealed to the mother that he had fondled her on several occasions. The family therapist they consulted reported the incident, as required under California law, to the police, who filed felony child abuse charges against the stepfather. The stepfather pled not guilty when he was charged, and the girl refused to testify against him. Frustrated by Amy's will not to testify, child protection workers placed Amy in solitary confinement in a juvenile prison. For 9 days, she was confined to a four-by-eight foot room with only a bed and lamp, and for a few days, a television set. When the judge in the case saw that Amy's resolve not to testify could not be broken, the case was dismissed. [...] A more recent case in Massachusetts involves two youths, ages 14 and 15, who were confined in various locked facilities for at least a five month period--part of the time in Federal facilities--as "material witnesses" in the case of a Boston-area man with whom they had lived, who is accused of Mann Act violations, after they attempted to recant all or part of previous statements they had made concerning the man."

Stanley, Lawrence A. (1987). "The Hysteria Over Child Pornography and Paedophilia," Paidika, 2, 13-34.

"A judge has jailed a 14-year-old girl who ran away rather than testify against a man accused of molesting her. The Norton Middle School student is being held indefinitely in an isolated area of the Summit County Jail on the orders of Common Pleas Judge James Murphy. The teen, jailed since Wednesday, insists she is not a sex abuse victim and is demanding a lawyer be assigned to represent her, court records show. However, jail officials said Monday she cannot speak with anyone without permission from county prosecutors. Prosecutors say the teen is a material witness and is being held in jail for her own protection. But lawyers for defendant Galo Sanchez-Pesantes contend the state -- with approval from the girl's mother-- has "effectively kidnapped" the teen, holding her in an adult jail while denying her access to an attorney in an effort to force her testimony. [...] Sanchez-Pesantes is accused of unlawful sexual conduct with a minor stemming from a Jan. 20 incident in which the boyfriend of the girl's mother allegedly saw the two on a couch. The girl denied having sex and refused to write a statement for police, defense attorneys said. "She said no, nothing happened with (Sanchez-Pesantes) and she said she told that to everyone, but no one wanted to listen," Brouse said Monday."

Trexler, Phil (2006). "Summit judge jails 14-year-old," The Beacon Journal.

"An 18-year-old Lilburn woman refused for a second time Thursday to testify in her father's child molestation trial and remained in jail on a contempt of court charge. Bond was set at $100,000. Deidre Lee Dickey was jailed Wednesday after refusing to testify against Ed R. Dickey, who is on trial on charges of sexual abuse against Miss Dickey and her two younger sisters. Superior Court Judge Bryant Huff called Miss Dickey back into court Thursday and asked if she was willing to testify, told her the consequences of not doing so and listened as she again refused to cooperate. "My understanding is that when the children realized what the position of the state was, they didn't want to testify," said defense attorney Calvin J. Leipold Jr. "I think it's one thing for children to ask for help and another for them to find themselves in a position like the ones these children are in." A prosecutor said he will recall Miss Dickey again Friday. "The court's order is that she testify, and when she refused she was held to be in willful contempt," prosecuting attorney Donald Johnstono said Thursday. "We'll be back again tomorrow." Miss Dickey's mother, Peggy Dickey, said in an interview Thursday that her daughters believe the state does not care about them or their family and decided not to let prosecutors "pressure them" into testifying. Another of Mrs. Dickey's daughters, age 16, collapsed on the stand Wednesday and could not testify, either. Mrs. Dickey said she believes the charges against her husband are untrue. The accusations were brought to the attention of prosecutors by the Dickeys' extended family."

McCarthy, Rebacca (1988). "Jailed Teen Again Refuses To Testify Against Father," Atlanta Constitution, 14 October.