H 3261

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SUMMARY: At present, there is considerable disagreement in all directions about the reliability and validity of our sex offender classification system. Level 1, 2 and 3 may not reflect the actual risk to re-offend. This bill would commission a study to review our state-wide classification system.

An Act Relative to Conducting Study on Sexual Recidivism

SECTION 1. Notwithstanding any general or special law to the contrary or any regulation, a study of the rates of sexual recidivism of Level 1, 2 and 3 offenders shall be conducted by an independent organization that shall be selected by the Legislative Joint Committee on Public Safety and Security to help determine whether the current classification system is accurately classifying offenders. The study shall provide general information on the sexual recidivism rates of classified sex offenders and shall include the type of sexual recidivism to determine the degree of dangerousness, which is part of the classification level.

The study shall examine five years sexual recidivism rates beginning with offenders classified in 2004. Recidivism rates hall be measured by tabulating new sex offense charges by reviewing new CORI sex offense convictions. In addition to recidivism rates by classification level, the study should include a) the age of the sex offenders who have recidivated to determine whether sex offenders in the Commonwealth follow the national trend of lower recidivism rates after age 40; b) recidivism rates of juveniles as compared to adults; c) recidivism rates of females as compared to adults; and incidence of noncontact offenders who recidivate by committing a contact sex offense.

A report on the results of the study shall be filed with the clerks of the Senate and House of Representatives on or before December 31, 2017.

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