Most Victims of Sexual Assault Know the Alleged Offender, Study Finds

A study conducted in a sexual assault resource center found more than 70 percent of alleged offenders were known to the victims. The report by researchers at the University of Tennessee, “Percentage of Named Offenders on the Registry at the Time of the Assault: Reports from Sexual Assault Survivors,” used one year of data from the resource center during which it provided services to approximately 1,300 people. Full names were provided for more than 60 percent of the known assailants. Of those 566 cases only 4.8 percent were found on a sex offender registry and even fewer, 3.7 percent (21 cases) were listed publicly due to the date of conviction. More than 95 percent of the alleged offenders were know personally to the victims in the 21 cases where the offender could have been identified by the sex offender registry. Researchers concluded the sex offender registries might have limited impact due to the fact that they only include convicted sex offenders.

Young Sex Offenders May Skip Public Registry

Under new rules from the Justice Department, juvenile sex offenders may not have to appear on the public sex offender registry. States now have options to shield juveniles, according to Youth Today. This shift in policy loosens up requirements of The Adam Walsh Act, which creates a national sex offender database.  Originally the government  mandated that all teens 14 or older, convicted of aggravated sexual assault, must appear on the registry. In May, the Justice Department gave states the choice to exempt children whose cases are handled in juvenile court.  Georgia did not put juveniles on the sex offender registry before the Walsh Act.  And now the new state sex offender law enacted May 29th says “conduct which is adjudicated in juvenile court shall not be considered a criminal offense against a victim who is a minor.” Georgia is one of 47 states that have not officially complied with the Walsh Act.

Sexting Laws: Are They Too Tough on Teens?

Two 14-year olds at the exclusive Lovett School in Buckhead are under investigation in a sexting scandal, as lawmakers in Georgia and across the country debate exactly how to punish children for a crime they may not understand.