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CA Senate Passes 'Chelsea's Law'

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By Jason Beahm on August 25, 2010 12:41 PM

The CA Senate has passed a bill designed to increase restrictions on violent sexual predators. AB 1844, known as "Chelsea's Law," was passed unanimously by the California state senate Tuesday. It now goes to the Assembly, where it will face approval of amendments, before finally making its way to the desk of Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. The Governor has already stated that he plans to sign the bill.

Chelsea's Law was introduced by Republican Assemblyman Nathan Fletcher from San Diego. The bill was designed in response to the rape and murder of Chelsea King, 17, by registered sex offender John Albert Gardner III. The rape and murder occurred on February 25 in San Diego near Rancho Bernardo Community Park. Gardner III confessed to the killing of Chelsea King, in additional to raping and murdering Amber Dubois, 14. He is currently serving two life sentences without the possibility of parole, The San Diego Union-Tribune reports.  

Under Chelsea's Law, violent sex offenders who commit sex crimes against children would face mandatory life sentences. They would also face mandatory tracking programs. In addition, parole would be restricted for sex offenders.

The San Diego Union-Tribune reports that Assembly Bill 1844 will:

• Impose a life sentence without the possibility of parole for those convicted of a violent sexual crime against a child under the age of 14.

• Impose a sentence of 25-years-to-life for other forcible sex crimes, depending on the circumstances.

• Require habitual sex offenders to be tracked with a GPS for life.

• Ban sex offenders on parole from public parks. The ban will be lifted once they are released from parole.

• Implement a "containment model" strategy that involves more costly treatment, intensive monitoring, and polygraph tests to reduce recidivism.

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