.

Deputy DA to Push For Lake Forest Sex Offender Ban

A senior deputy district attorney plans to attend Tuesday's Lake Forest City Council meeting to encourage the city to pass an ordinance barring sex offenders from areas where children gather.

Supporters of a ordinance to ban registered sex offenders from county parks plan to ask the Lake Forest City Council to enact a similiar measure in city-owned parks at its Tuesday evening meeting.

Orange County Senior Deputy District Attorney Brian Fitzpatrick will speak at the meeting in support of a city ordinance that would forbid registered sex offenders from entering recreational areas where children regularly gather, according to a press release from the District Attorney's Office.

The county ordinance, which , banned registered sex offenders from recreational areas under county jurisdiction without permission from the sheriff’s department. Violations of the new law are punishable by up to six months in jail and/or a $500 fine. The new law, however, does not apply to city-owned parks.

At an October meeting of the Lake Forest City Council, at a future council meeting. However, the item has yet to appear on a council agenda for formal discussion.

Supporters say the law protects children from potential predators; opponents say the ban could face legal challenges as to its constitutionality.

Cities such as , , , Westminster and La Habra have followed the county's lead in discussing or enacting similar city ordinances; Irvine implemented a partial ban in June.

The meeting begins at 7 p.m. at , 25550 Commercentre Drive.

Robert Curtis November 19, 2011 at 05:21 AM
It amazes me that this ordinance is being considered because the OC Sheriff's dept. handles policing of Lake Forest. It has been the policy of the OC Sheriff's dept. not to allow the registrant to be at either OC county parts or those city parts under their agency like Lake Forest. The second reason is that the DA's office, probation dept. and sheriff's dept. are doing a great job keeping crime down. Why add more to a system that already works? Unless it's just to further punish RSO and their families.
Robert Curtis November 19, 2011 at 06:36 AM
There is one troubling question. Where is the opposing side? They did show up? Why wouldn't a group of people that this ordinance is going to affect not show up? Those people are afraid that's why! Although they have paid their debt to society. They're afraid for themselves but more for their families. So they don't stand up to protect their own rights. The rights that are just so wimseely swept away in the name of protecting the children. What about their children? They can't take them to the park or beach either. Where are we in Nazi Germany? I went through the Lake Forest leadership academy and during that 8 weeks a lot happened. I salon got shot up in Seal Beach (I'm a stylist) I received a US Congressional award for community service and my son saved a 4 yr old boy from drowning in a park. I'm a Registered ex-Sex offender (misdemeanor not involving a child) It happened 12 yrs ago. I've sense helped cancer patients, homeless veterans and battered women, but no matter what I do for good it'll always be trumped by being an RSO. I been feature on the front page of Saddle Back News, OC Register, on TV-news channels and a couple of OC magazines. I guess it's pretty good for a Registered Sex Offender. I feel it is my responsibility to be twice the citizen.
Donna November 20, 2011 at 08:12 PM
Robert Curtis - while your recent accomplishments are impressive, they should NOT even matter. From your own account, you have done the crime, you have done the time, and that should be the end of it. Once you are off parole / probation, there cannot be, under the Constitution of the United States of America, further punishment heaped upon you or anyone for a past conviction. And lets not kid ourselves - to call a presence ban on a public area, and a prohibition of taking your own children to an amenity designed specifically for them, anything but punishment is absurd. I vehemently oppose the notion of punishing Person A for something Person B did, does, or even better, might do. Because it is wrong, and because I would have to worry about some restriction placed upon me in the future for that speeding ticket I got in the mid seventies. Aside from the fact that this ordinance is completely useless. Even IF it were a deterrent - if it worked to perfection - then there would be no sex crimes by RSOs in Orange County parks. Compared to the current statistics of - wait for it - no sex crimes by RSOs in OC parks. The recent convictions for registrants violating the ordinance are being touted as some sort of success that the new laws are working in protecting children. Protecting from what exactly? Some guy with a 30 year old conviction taking his kids to the park? Some guy with a recent misdemeanor conviction having a taco on Cinco de Mayo? No thank you.
Donna November 20, 2011 at 08:13 PM
As far as opposition - I used to believe that speaking out against injustice made a difference. If nothing else, these City Council meetings on especially this topic, have taught me otherwise. It is difficult to appeal to a sense of reason when public officials (City Council members, DA office) and private citizens keep rattling off horrible crimes (Runnion, Lunsford, Dugard cases etc) that have NOTHING to do with the issue at hand, which is sex crimes committed by 290 registrants IN public parks. Most meetings can be viewed on-line and leave me shaking my head. I am not an RSO and as such not personally affected by this, but I am as a citizen who is alarmed by the continued erosion of basic rights and common sense. I believe the cities will continue to pass this ban, as to do otherwise would be political suicide (the 3 opposing HB CC members who at least appear to have a spine are duly noted - but they voted against a version of the ban, not necessarily the ban itself). The only recourse is to challenge this in the courts. I hope someone does, and that, even though I, as a resident will be negatively impacted by the money spent on this, it will cost the cities and county a bundle. Will it be you, Robert Curtis? If so, you have my support.
Robert Curtis June 28, 2013 at 01:32 AM
Some one has and of course it was repealed but at what cost? Ladies and gentlemen we as citizens have the responsibility of standing up for what is right not for what is popular. We have probation and parole departments that are in place to make sure those coming out of jails and prisons toe a certain line of therapy and accountability. I once had to walk that line. The sex offender registry was born from a place of loss and fear and is today a form of living death. The cause for it was mostly from the mentally ill acting out by being out of their heads and outside of really. It seems this thing has taken us to that same place a place of unreal darkness. What have we bought into people? A registry for the real target I'd understand a medical registry for the mentally ill. I have a 30 year old son that is mentally ill that is on anti-psychotic drugs. He needs watched and cared for and a registry in these cases keep us all safer, even him. Rick Warren has a son that acted out against himself. My son Noah Christopher has told me he what's to be dead many times because of the voices in his head. He is often afraid and angry but doesn't know what to do. Fellow Americans me I'm a registered sex offender and although it is wrong I'll wear that but what about my son? Who will keep society safe from him and keep him safe from himself?

Boards

More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something
See more »