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Employment, Computers, and Sex Offender Registration: Whats the Connection?
By Art Bowker, Cybercrime Specialist
Published: 08/27/2012

Job-application-e Technology restrictions in corrections are really never far from my mind. So when an article or study comes out that touches, even remotely on the issue, I light up a cigar and commence reading. There were three recently that caught my attention.

Two articles appeared in the June 2012 issue of Federal Probation, which on first blush appear unrelated to one another. The first article by Christopher E. Kelly and Jamie J. Fader noted that nearly 1/3 of the employers in their study… “had moved to exclusively computer-based application methods, accessible via either a personal computer with an Internet connection or in-store computer kiosk.” The study further notes increasing these computer based methods require more time to complete, often include requests for details about criminal history, self-reports of criminal behavior, self-reported drug use, drug tests, and credit history, and include personality assessments. Additionally, the study suggests that many offenders may have greater difficulty correctly navigating these technology based applications or at least getting pass their screening efforts, to get an interview. The study did not specifically address the impact of technology conditions for those offenders restricted from using computers or the Internet. However, one does not have to be a rocket scientist to realize that if employers are increasing using online applications than offenders who are prohibited from accessing computers are going to be at a distinct disadvantage. The second article did not touch on employment issues . It was by Daniel B. Freedman and discussed a study exploring the long-term risk of recidivism and registration failures among sexual offenders. (I just can’t seem to get away from the topic of sex offender registration. It is like gum you happen to step in on a 100 degree day.) Briefly the study found registration failure increases the likelihood of recidivism by 64%. Freedman notes:
“Evidence is accumulating that registration failures are linked to recidivism. The substantive trends are clear, even in research that does not find a statistical association (Duwe & Donnay, 2010). What is not apparent is whether registration failures truly approximate or predict criminal behaviors, or whether instead they represent other characteristics such as intelligence, poor communication skills, or systemic differences among criminal justice jurisdictions. In addition, to postulate a link between recidivism and registration failures, on its face, is rather simplistic. Instead, the association will most likely be convoluted by multiple mediating and moderating influences (Duwe & Donnay, 2010; Losel & Schmucker, 2005). For instance, this research finds that child offenders have more registration failures.”
For those few sex offenders that read my blog, neither Freedman nor I are saying there is a cause and effect relationship here. Freedman goes on to note that this link may also be impacted by race as well as adult vs. child offenders. He concludes further research is needed. Okay you say. Interesting but I can’t see through all the cigar smoke to see the connection between the two articles. Well, the connection comes into play with the third article written by Nina Terrero which concerned a recent study which found one in six sex offenders were using techniques created by identify thieves to avoid their legally mandated registration requirements. She notes:
“According to a study conducted by Utica College and funded by the U.S. Justice Department, an estimated 92,000 of the 570,000 registered sex offenders nationwide are using the internet to live freely and undetected while seemingly abiding by “court-imposed or statutory restrictions.”
Wow. Interesting huh. I got a lot of questions. What are the implications? What is the link between registration failure and recidivism? If sex offenders increasing need computer access to get employment, which is a good thing, what about those who appear to be using the Internet to bypass registration? What do we do, hope for the best? There are pros to allowing computer access clearly. But there now seems to be additional concern with allowing access that was not thought of before. Now we have to consider that access may be used to “fly under the radar”, which has some kind of recidivism link. Obviously, we need more research to sort this stuff out. But for now my suggestion is for supervised sex offenders, allow access but manage that access. I know I have said this before, but check out the American Probation and Parole Association’s issue paper on this topic, ”Managing the Risk Posed by Offender Computer Use” You might also check out this recent article in Law Technology News called, “How to Impose Technological Restraints on Criminal Offender?” , written by your favorite cigar smoker. What you thought I all I was doing was eating hamburgers and working on my tan lines? Fooled you! But speaking of cigars, I have a lit one somewhere. Be safe out there!

Art Bowker is the author of The Cybercrime Handbook for Community Corrections: Managing Offender Risk in the 21st Century. He has over 26 years experience in both law enforcement and corrections at the state and federal level. In 2008, Art was the International President of the High Technology Crime Investigation Association (HTCIA). This professional non-profit organization is the largest of its kind devoted to the prevention, investigation, and prosecution of crimes involving advanced technologies (htcia.org). Art is also member of the American Probation and Parole Association (APPA) and is a member of their Technology Committee, He has a Master of Corrections degree from Kent State University. Follow Art on Twitter.com at: (http://twitter.com/Computerpo)

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Comments:

  1. Sex Offender Jobs on 11/19/2014:

    http://www.sexoffenderjobs.com We have the real answers.

  2. Sex Offender Jobs on 11/19/2014:

    If you are a sex offender who is looking for a job or just needs help getting information regarding employment and college options check out www.SexOffenderJobs.com Sex Offender Employment Help We have so many answers. If you can't find yours send us an email.

  3. Fred Davis on 09/08/2012:

    Does anyone know the statistical difference of one in six offenders that are using false identities to procure a way to survive in relation to the offender who is not keeping in touch with his parole officer at all but simply disappears off of the map?

  4. Fred Davis on 09/02/2012:

    I will adhere to the subject matter as much as possible. thank you for your concern.

  5. computerpo on 09/02/2012:

    WARNING POST: Fred, you are coming dangerously close to conduct that falls under the functional definition of "spam." You are continuing posting content which is either off topic or makes no sense. You latest post dealing with marriage and plea agreements is clearly off topic. You do not need to advise the world that you are going to read more. You also do not need to response to this warning post. Otherwise, I will contact the powers that be and let them decide. They may delete all your previous post as well as delete your profile, barring your participation. In short, you have been warned to stay on point and stop with the meaningless commentary and posts just to post.

  6. Fred Davis on 09/01/2012:

    I do believe a contract requires two or more individuals. The contract or covenant of marriage is taken lightly today also as are plea bargains (which is really a bargain for the State) Because covenants are for honest individuals, that is probably why most all other contracts are considered unimportant also since the industrial revolution started. I thank the author of this article for his willingness to actually have a discourse concerning this very important subject. I know those that are invested in the system are hesitant to discuss real issues online because sometimes honest individuals do not get the promotion as quickly as those that like the popularity of not rocking the boat. I am still looking into all that this author has written and will be back soon. Thanks again.

  7. Fred Davis on 08/29/2012:

    We do have some agreement here. I am reading your materials and a loyt of the mechanisms are good. We will have to agree to disagree on the registries after the contract or plea agreement is fulfilled. It surely is punishment even if the present law does take the breaking of a covenant/contract lightly. Thank You.

  8. computerpo on 08/29/2012:

    Fred, I have indicated that computer management is only for those under correctional supervision...probation or parole. I am not in favor of computer restrictions for those who are not under supervision... That said, if an offender were to misuse a computer to commit a new sex crime, I have no issue with them getting an enhanced sentence. I understand the issue with folks having to reg when they didn't previously... Or not as long.. That issue will be resolved, not with the abolish the reg., but with reining in its impact. Thanks for toning your comments down to something that can make sense,

  9. Fred Davis on 08/29/2012:

    Thank you, sir, for your comments. I think I have said repeatedly that the group of sex offenders is not a homogeneous group, then treat them as heterogeneous and not put them all on a registry. Society does not see them as different because of the registry. I believe we can continue the discussion. I am interested in the viewpoints of those that are doing the job that many would not want to do. I believe the corrections department and the guards sometimes have a thankless task. They are to be honored as a whole. I am in the process of reviewing the statistics, the views, and the application of such in the present. I do realize that parole and probation is much different than when one has completed the time as a non-violent offender. Did you mean that only those on parole or probation should be monitored on the computer? It is wrong to extend punishment or surveillance beyond the sentence with sex offender registration. Surveillance of any sort including computer surveillance should not be done without committing a crime. Many sex offenders were sentenced with a plea bargain. A plea bargain is a contract that should be honored by both parties. When the sentence is over it is over. Here in the mountains we honor our contracts. This is why honesty is the best policy. Before I went to jail, I promised to myself and to God to be honest. I often wondered how the microcosm of society worked from within the womb of the system. What better way to learn than through experiential knowledge. My crime was committed before the layers of AWA were even in mind. It was only when my wife and I decided that I needed a driver’s license that the word “sex offender” took on new meaning. When you have laws that are ex post facto they do not honor the original contract. A nation or people are only as good as their word or covenant. As far as my terminologies being new, I believe you are just not familiar with them. The “disease of tribalism” causes one to be ill at ease; that is the way it works. It separates people into groups and labels them homogeneously, and then prods the groups to compete with each other by creating sub-groups of people and then tries to divide and conquer through words and clichés. The principles remain the same, but some are metaphorical, literal and some political. Disease does not mean whooping cough at all times. I am from Baltimore, and so is Nancy Pelosi, so my lingo or word usage is from there. Don’t blame Lambsburg for me or for my word usage. I believe when one has done their bit and parole has ended, that individual should be left alone. I don’t want the government sniffing around my literal dirty laundry on the line or watching every word that I use. My life is transparent, and that is why I do not use fake names. That is better than most that post on the Internet.

  10. computerpo on 08/28/2012:

    Fred, I must say you are a persistent person. This article is one of many written on the issue of sex offenders and computers. I have said it before and will say it again. No all sex offenders have the same risk. Some have a low risk and some have a high risk. Some equate low risk as “no risk.”...which is not what it means. That said, not every sex offender is a mad men either. We also discuss sex offenders like they are some pure criminal type. They aren’t. Some never have done anything before and are first time offenders. Others, have committed car theft, fraud, drug offenses, etc. Some are career criminals and some just do sex crimes. The list goes on an one. Some also have a mental illness, drug and/or alcohol problem. My references to you possibly being drunk or maybe needing a medication adjustment is because you have taken the subject of this article and twisted it to throw in everything from communism to being a Nazi and now you are coming up with new phrases... “the disease of tribalism” and “reading about the limbs of the tree”.... And this master of contradiction “I doubt we need more government control of the Internet. Parole and probation requires more limits, and those on such should obey all of limits. However, the root is the issue and that is that sentencing with hard time for violent crime is good.” Even for someone with a self acknowledged 8th grade education, you are rambling and are off topic. Maybe that is what passes for discussing things in places like Lambsburg, VA or Mount Airy, North Carolina but for the rest of us we kind of like the discussion to be more focused. Any emotions of negativity you maybe feeling are not because you are a former offender, or substaance abuser. The "negativity vibe" is for posts that make little or no sense, ramble, and are just added as if to say look the writer can type. I could careless what your past is. Just make an argument that one can follow. Hell it doesn't even have to be spelled right or have proper grammar. Just stop rambling or refrain from posting everytime you see the word "sex" in the title... Yep, you are posting all over this site when the word "sex" appears. Anyway, Fred, I should be grateful you are reading at least one word of the article. Ta ta ta for now...

  11. Fred Davis on 08/28/2012:

    I was always taught that attacking an ideology and not an individual was noble. That is not appropriate today. The initial post deals with symptoms of the disease of tribalism. My answers are addressing the root problem. I have downloaded the booklet that seems to fit with our prior conversation. I am willing to go forward in a discussion and deal with ideology alone and attempt to show that the real concern should be about the causal factors of the difficult and unrealistic laws and their consequences, rather than adding more restrictive and intrusive laws about computer usage. The information I see in the booklets is accurate. Many former sex offenders are intelligent and do not fit the mold of a feeble retard looking for young six year olds. The greatest drug is false images or ideology because it is the root that is the causal factor of the symptoms of that entire false tree. The post deals with symptoms, and I am just now reading about the limbs on the tree. I am obviously not as government-educated or have the degrees you have. I am one of those former offenders that you think uses meth, alcohol, or smokes. These three things stress one out and are self-abusive. I do not abuse myself any longer by smoking, drinking or using drugs. Ideology is rooted much deeper as an addiction. When one touches the root of ideology the one taught such through rote feels as though one is touching his actual self. That is not the case. Therefore I will proceed by first studying how the limbs on the tree or symptoms can produce such strange fruit that looks so good by projection through hypnosis or empathy to the jaundiced eye. I believe that to project that a person is a meth user, alcoholic, or even a cave man is really reflective of the true feelings you must have towards former sex offenders. Food can be an addiction, but what goes into the heart will come out later. I do not believe that someone who smokes does so all the time because of the nicotine. It can be self-abuse or desire for self-worth through image. People also use an image of a sixteen-year old female to sell a product. Generally these images do not deliver from addiction but add to the addiction. Therefore, one should not judge someone simply because they smoke or have an obvious addiction. I could probably show that those into progressive theology are also addicted to what was put into them by a stronger personality. The problem with this judgment of addiction with psychology is that the bottom psychologist when he has a problem goes to the next one and the chain goes all the way to the top of the pyramid. Where does the top psychologist go after that? Sir, you simply are doing your job, and you are probably good at it. However, I have an eighth grade education, and no one has yet to prove me to be ideologically incorrect when all of the facts are considered. Therefore, I will study your post further, and will deal with the limbs as well as the vine that is drawing strength from the tree. In construction, when a house has a problem, one does not go to the second floor to first see why the roof is leaking and the trusses are out of alignment. It is too late then. One checks the foundation first. One cannot put braces on the roof trusses and sell the house as if the foundation is sure. I doubt we need more government control of the Internet. Parole and probation requires more limits, and those on such should obey all of limits. However, the root is the issue and that is that sentencing with hard time for violent crime is good. Before we had abnormal use laws, we had straightforward laws that addressed violent crime for unnatural use. If the majority rules cannibalism is good, and bestiality is fine, then bestiality would be acceptable. This is relative, and not based on absolutes. I was corrected for using the word “fat” by someone on this site. How ludicrous is that! Food addiction is shame-based as well as sex addiction. If one is programmed through punishment or false love to let go of the sex addiction, unless the root cause is healed, one will become fatter. Laws on fatness or fatness offenders will not stop fatness by residential restrictions or new regulations on restaurants. The fat police can trace the word “fat,” “stout,” or “pleasingly plump” but the resentment that those fat people have against that law will cause them to eat even more or else smoke or drink. The principle of the root problem of resentment does not change. During prohibition the symptoms were outlawed for drinking. Then mobsters took on the drinking industry and made so much money that the government laxed off and eliminated the laws. This drove the price of booze down. Those that are alcoholic know that booze is not the problem, but it is the resentment that is the causal factor through trauma. The mobsters had many businesses doing their will to help society to drink even better. The pendulum swings back and forth.

  12. Fred Davis on 08/28/2012:

    I am moving on. Have a blessed evening.

  13. Fred Davis on 08/28/2012:

    One cannot be on a public registry, demonized and get employment or housing and must live in a tent or under a bridge with no way to wash appropriately. This can be a hindrance to actual stabilization into the community and becoming human is difficult. The technical laws by upgrading non -violent offenders arbitrarily to appear to be protecting society and not using the original assessment that the judge gave at sentencing could have a little to do with recidivism rates. The registry intermingled with residential restrictions can at times inhibit a person from working or even entering a community. An idle mind is the devil's workshop. Just maybe there is a direct co-relation between the registry itself produced by fear that could cause one to throw in the towel as to becoming a productive member of society. Any other questions?

  14. computerpo on 08/28/2012:

    Fred, the article discussed sex offender reg, in the context of computer restrictions and the need for sex offenders to find employment...and the possible risk of unmanaged computer access. You have hijacked the comment area to discuss sex offender reg and whether is appropriate. You have had your moment in the spotlight. Time to move on.

  15. Fred Davis on 08/28/2012:

    I only put my name on what I think or believe. I would believe that parole and probation only supplies government unions with more non –jobs and reduces crime by nothing. They are symptoms of the decay of the family unit. Sir you are reading into my statements not there to justify what “you see” as good law. I really see this nation going down the tubes with a very large debt that we cannot afford the malarkey being spouted by either party as bringing solutions to the protection of children at all through registries. It will destroy the next generation of the traditional family. These laws and registries will be abused by government and I will let you know it. I also do not think the AWA and the deceptions from the bottom to the top and the government censoring words by putting individuals in prison for telling others a different view. If you think that what you do is helping to prevent future crime and that retroactive laws and holding individuals past their release dates are alright then I am not promoting anything that is a truly a conspiracy at all. Anytime a progressive and his view is critically assessed the “name calling” and character of that person is used as a distraction to prevent real dialogue or verbal intercourse. I am not the only one in this real world who thinks the “whole root” of sex offender laws are socialistic and that the root needs to be pulled out. All of the tribunals being used on American citizens with “no due process” and “civil commitments” without warrants are evil and I am not alone nor do I hide my views from anyone. I do not pick something that is evil at the root and dress it in a pink gown. I do not drink. I do not smoke. I do not hide my beliefs. I do not visit porno sites. It is interesting that I just recently received quite a complement from an individual posting on Ms, Stowe's “if on child is saved” article who actually used some of the historical data to add to his collection of facts that I presented to him. He thanked me for it and said it helped him to connect the dots on how these things started. Some simply can connect the dots and some reek of socialist miasma and cannot even see that what they are doing is highly unjust or at the least narcissistic. I may not do what is politically “appropriate” but I will speak up when I see a wrong being imposed on American citizens by unjust laws.What can I say? If your feelings are hurt I am not sorry because your post has a little condescending spirit behind the way you assess those on the registry as numbers and data and not individuals with families to protect and have real children to protect from being indoctrinated with socialist precepts as if it is a good thing. The root needs to be dug up on these registry laws in my humble opinion. One cannot reform bad law or fondle it or dress such up as “pretty in pink”. Today words are being censored even if they are etymologically accurate by the thought police. I do not drink, smoke or use drugs. It keeps my head clear. Key words are sometimes used to follow other ideologies around on the internet even while simply having verbal intercourse over political issues. “Soylent green is people” and former offenders are also.

  16. computerpo on 08/28/2012:

    Fred, you did not break a role per se...but your comments have to be tied to the content of the article.. Your comments are not to be a stage where you can say whatever you want and make conspiracy rants. This article was discussing the complicated relationship, if it is even that between computer access, the ability to get job, and that some sex offenders , not all, appear to be using Internet access to fly under sex offender reg laws. Additional one study notes that there is some kind of relationship between failure to reg and recivism. In, your 7 posts, I can some up you comments as follows: govt bad, sex offender reg bad, society has become unethical, moving to be like communists/Nazi, feminist bad...and maybe man good... The only differences between my summation and your actual comments is I left out the caveman grunts... And I put in one comment thread..as opposed to 7.... You must like have your name comes up in print with each new rant. If you must comment read the article completely...not just the title... Think a moment on your comments and if the are really germane to the article. If the are post them. However if they are your indictment of modern society, go back to your 12 pack as I am sure you did not finish the last one and move on.

  17. Fred Davis on 08/27/2012:

    ART, I never said I “hated” sex offender registries. I said they are the “causal factor” of recidivism. That cigar must be strong. Hating laws or those that promote ridiculous things like these is a waste of energy. It is hard to address "rhetoric" and "skewed statistics" when a lot of recidivism is rooted in technicalities and retroactive laws for non violent offenders being magically changed to violent while changing the whole original sentencing premise at the stroke of a pen or new retroactive law. Work? It is impossible when the regime uses fear to scare and petrify soccer mom as if there is a devil under every bush. They think Freddy Kruger is on the loose.

  18. Fred Davis on 08/27/2012:

    I changed my mind. I will be much more specific with data, and what I despise about other issues.

  19. Fred Davis on 08/27/2012:

    Truth seems as if it is crazy to those rote-educated and programmed to to think in a box. I don't believe I broke a rule here on this site.

  20. Fred Davis on 08/27/2012:

    OK LAST POST

  21. computerpo on 08/27/2012:

    Fred, you seem to be rambling a bit. My crystal ball tells me a med adjustment is in your future.... Communists...Nazi, etc.... Try to post addressing something in the piece beyond your hatred of the sex offender reg. Your points, if you have any are lost in your rumblings... Try being on point okay... Or get your own blog where you can ramble about Nazi and communists etc. to your hearts content. But don't clutter this blog with ramblings like a mad spammer on meth!

  22. Fred Davis on 08/27/2012:

    This author is a blessing indeed. He is an irritant to some former offenders but to the strong and resilient he is the thorn in the flesh that keeps one humble and helps one depend upon inner strength instead of outcome based goals and chasing the carrot that the political metaphorical donkey pulls. Thank You.

  23. Fred Davis on 08/27/2012:

    Most former sex offenders have a lower recidivism rate than most other offenses. Offenses can be skewed by incrementally raising the age of consent in increments (the New Obama Adolescent is now 26) and the charts show an epidemic of child abuse by perception. Fourth wave Feminism by perception now has enough laws and ordinances that almost “any heterosexual relationship” is oppressive and should be avoided like the plague. This causes males to view marriage as something to be avoided entirely. They are correct. The bastard child is now raised by the socialist nanny state from the cradle to the grave. Through Planned Parenthood the child himself may be eliminated even before he gets to the cradle today. Margaret Sanger was about “saving the children” about as much as nurse Radched was about “saving her useful idiots” in the institution where she also implemented the matriarchal principles with her “love” and “empathy.”

  24. Fred Davis on 08/27/2012:

    This article seems to be swatting out a gnat and swallowing a camel. What is occurring here is a superficial attempt at dealing with a substantive problem. Classifying people in a homogeneous fashion using sex offender registries, and promoting such seems to be in the politicians’ best interest and not that of the offenders, children or society. The registries are propagated as a solution rather than a cause of many difficulties; we can see that the registries themselves are bad law. When the research comes out, the registries will be revealed for what they really are with the collateral damage they have created economically, psychologically, spiritually, and disastrously for the traditional American family. Only then will the progressives know that they have egg on their face. Ninety-five percent of future offenses will be done by those not on the registry. Sandusky had most of the sports industry enabling his wrong for many years because of the pride of the god of sports. Sports came first, ahead of the safety of the children. While registered offenders were taking up the time of authorities, much damage was done. All politics starts in the home with a battle between husband and wife, and this works outward from the grassroots, and this causes confusion. In actuality the wife represents the sensitive feeling left in politics while enabling everything that is confusing and unnatural, and the husband who has no authority left in the home due to feminist theology represents the neo-right. Since the husband has left home, the state becomes the surrogate father. Now mamma must lean on the state. Politicians, that are so concerned about her welfare, willingly enable her to continue robbing from those that work and deposit that money to those who are looking to government as dad. It is better for the progressive to put a band-aid on a major issue. Ordinary citizens (the ninety-five percent) or those never arrested (unregistered offenders) will be on the Internet stalking their prey. Some of these will be violent. The progressive Democrats and a few neo-con Republicans will play the game to soothe the conscience of the wicked and make money out of it at the same time. Using the right or the left in politics to make icons out of children makes politicians deity or puffs their ego up so that they cannot see the ninety-five percent of future crime that could serve healthy political ambitions. The problem is that the left and the neo-right on both sides of the aisle are running out of the working man’s money to play their game. This is like economically changing the chairs around on the Titanic as the fifth compartment fills with water. The residential restrictions exacerbate recidivism and cause many to just go under the wire as if they are passing from East Berlin to West Berlin. Some of the East Berlin principles crossed the border with those going to West Berlin. This does no good, because those that crossed the border and escaped as a nation, have now infiltrated our own government by laws implemented to drive the father out of the family unit by any means necessary. By resenting the socialists and communists the collective now has taken on their traits in our own county in principle. This is because of the unnatural use or bonding that comes through the Stockholm Syndrome. Our leaders, which are supposed to be servants of the grassroots, pick an unpopular group to start registries and dupes or useful idiots are used to promote fear. The next group will be the gun owners. Gun owning individuals will be seen as evil, instead of those community organizers in government that create chaos among groups and then create false solutions to remedy the problem that they created. The fat police are out there, and the religion police are against any religious group that is patriarchal in concept. Do you know why this is? The strength is in the family, and the father is the strength. One only needs to observe how the Bolshevik Revolution worked and to connect the dots. The Bolsheviks created no fault divorce, guaranteed women’s rights, took the property away from the landowners and gave it to the peasants as an entitlement in order to be fair. Then the peasants rebelled, after they realized they had been had by the entitlement, and their children were chattel of the state (see parens patriae) since the father had been disenfranchised of his natural authority in his home. When the politics didn’t work, they killed everyone who did not cooperate. I also wanted to say that Lenin gave abortion rights and the seed of the father was also the chattel of the state. Some fifty-three years later these principles trickled down into the United States using the waves of the feminist movement. Hitler said if one gains the minds of women and children, then the men will follow. Is this not America today? Some good references on this subject are the Child Savers by Anthony M. Platt, and Sex-Offender Laws, Failed Policies, New Directions by Wright


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