Senate To Act On Bill To Keep Sexual Predators Off The Streets

Thomas P. Morahan

April 06, 2005

“It is very important that we act to protect the public by enacting this bill. Other states have enacted civil commitment laws to protect the public from sexually violent predators and to provide treatment to this dangerous group of offenders,” said Senator Morahan.

State. Under our existing laws, sexually violent predators are released into the community without the benefit of treatment designed to address their unique needs. No provision exists to protect the public from sexually violent predators.

The United States Supreme Court has repeatedly upheld the involuntary civil commitment of dangerous persons who are unable to control their behaviors and whose mental illnesses render them a grave risk to the public health and safety.

Recidivism rates for persons who commit sexually violent offenses are extraordinarily high. According to a recent report from the New York State Department of Correctional Services, for the period from 1986 through 1995, approximately 49 percent of sex offenders who were released from New York prisons in 1986 were returned to prison for a violation of parole or for committing a new crime.