Lawmaker introduces bill to castrate child sex offenders

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A bill proposed by Rep. Steve Hurst (R-Munford) would require sex offenders over the age of 21 to pay for their own castration prior to release from the Department of CorrectionsHB365 specifies that the penalty would be reserved for those who have committed sexual crimes against a minor 12 or under.

According to a report from the Connecticut General Assembly, eight states already have laws requiring the surgical or chemical castration of child sex offenders: California, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Montana, Oregon, Texas and Wisconsin.

While opponents of such laws note that chemical castration can cause potentially life-threatening blood clots and allergic reactions, and likely stands in defiance of the U.S. Constitution’s protection from cruel and unusual punishment, a 2005 study printed in the Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law found that only up to 10 percent of sex offenders commit similar crimes once being surgically castrated.

While that number seems impressive, it is not much different than the rate at which all other sex offenders commit the same crime. According to the Department of Justice, only 5.3 percent of all sex offenders are rearrested within three years of their initial crime.

Hurst did not reply to a request for comment on the legislation, which has no co-sponsors and is the first he has proposed this session

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