The following was sent to The Dagger on March 16 by Del. Mary-Dulaney James:
I am proud to tell you that the House of Delegates moved forward seven bills today that crack down on sex offenders and protect our children and communities. As a sponsor of several of the bills and a fervent support of them all I am very happy to be bringing you this good news.
I am thankful for the overwhelming bi-partisan support of this worthy legislation. The bills are as follows (you can click the bill number to see the full text and status information);
· House Bill 936 brings Maryland into compliance with the federal Adam Walsh Act. The bill also requires homeless sex offenders, sex offenders convicted of indecent exposure and possessors of child pornography, and offenders who repeatedly abuse children under the age of 14 to register on the Maryland Sex Offender Registry and expands information posted on the Registry to include places of employment, other residences and a plain language description of the crime.
· House Bill 473 requires lifetime supervision of serious and repeat sex offenders after completing their original sentence. Lifetime supervision could include GPS monitoring, requiring ongoing polygraphs, restricting an offender’s movement to their place of work and home etc. The bill also subjects juvenile sexual offenders to extended supervision.
· House Bill 931 reconstitutes the Sex Offender Advisory Board in order to make recommendations on how to best manage sex offenders and protect the public from them.
· House Bill 289 eliminates diminution credits for an offender convicted of first and second degree rape and first and second degree sex offense against a child under the age of consent (16 years old).
· House Bill 599 eliminates diminution credits for repeat third degree sex offenders, whose victims are children under the age of consent (16 years old).
· House Bill 1046 requires a judge, instead of a district court commissioner, to determine whether a registered sex offender arrested for any crime is entitled to pretrial release and creates a rebuttable presumption that the registered sex offender poses a danger to the community. The legislation also requires that a criminal rap sheet include documentation that someone is a registered sex offender or if they have had extended supervision.
· House Bill 1053 strengthens the State’s prohibition against possessing or promoting child pornography.
In these times we cannot do enough to protect our children and these seven bills are just one way that we can keep these criminals out of our neighborhoods and away from our kids.
Please check out my new website, still located at www.marydulanyjames.com! As always, contact me if you have any questions or comments.
Very Truly Yours,