State Senator John J. Bonacic (R/I/C - Mount Hope) today announced that his legislative proposal, Senate bill 4656B, was approved by the Senate. Bonacic’s legislation amends the correction law to require that all level three sex offenders, who are most likely to repeat their crime, be continuously monitored as to their location and makes it a crime to violate the monitoring provision. The measure is sponsored in the Assembly by Assemblyman David Koon whose daughter was raped and murdered several years ago by a violent sexual predator.
"I am pleased my Senate colleagues supported this important proposal. There isn’t enough being done to keep our children and families safe from sexual predators," stated Senator Bonacic. "We need tougher laws and we need to use the best technology available to prevent sexual offenders from repeating these heinous crimes."
Senator Bonacic continued, "It doesn’t make sense to use electronic monitoring for Martha Stewart while the most dangerous sexual predators roam free to prey on our children and families."
According to the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services, there are as many as 5,478 level three registered sex offenders residing in communities throughout New York State. The total number of registered sex offenders is over 22,000. Under Bonacic’s bill, parole officers and probation officials can track level three offenders at all times and monitor their every move.
Senator Bonacic said the GPS is not a replacement, however, for probation officers, jail time, or civil commitment. "This measure should be considered supplemental. There isn’t a jail cell that can be replaced by a computer, nor is a computer monitor worth more than a parole officer. What has been found in other jurisdictions, however, is that when GPS monitoring is implemented, recidivism rates go down," Senator Bonacic said.
Senator Bonacic continued, "Recently, some counties have proposed implementing GPS monitoring, however, having the system in one county and not another doesn’t make sense. This needs to be implemented on a statewide level."
"My colleagues and I in the Senate are committed to protecting our children and families from dangerous sexual predators. The Assembly companion bill has broad bi-partisan support in the Assembly. The Speaker should allow this bill to be voted on. It is imperative for the Assembly to make the enactment of those proposals a priority this Session," Senator Bonacic concluded.