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Sex offenders pose challenge for policy makers
Thursday, November 3, 2011 9:00 AM
The scripts are available for printing and for sound bite identification.

Go to http://www.wichita.edu/newsline to get the current Wichita State University Newsline. If you cannot access the Newsline at the Web address above, contact Joe Kleinsasser at (316) 978-3013 or cell (316) 204-8266 or joe.kleinsasser@wichita.edu. Newsline cuts may be edited to suit your needs.

If you have additional questions for Ryan Alexander after listening to the WSU Newsline, please contact him at (316) 978-5500 or ryan.alexander@wichita.edu.

Background:
There are more than half a million registered sex offenders in the United States, and they provide an enormous challenge for policy makers. Ryan Alexander, assistant professor of criminal justice and director of the forensics science program at Wichita State University, has conducted extensive research on sex offenders and explains why the challenge is so great.

Voice wrap:
Announcer:
There are more than half a million registered sex offenders in the United States and they pose an enormous challenge for policy makers. Ryan Alexander, assistant professor of criminal justice and director of the Forensics Science Program at Wichita State University, has conducted extensive research on sex offenders and comments on one of the misperceptions.

Alexander: "There seems to be a misperception that all sex offenders are somehow sexual predators, when if we look at the empirical data, only about 1 to 2 percent of sex offenders fit that profile of a sex offender being a sexual predator."

Announcer: As horrific as these crimes may be, Alexander says a one-size-fits-all policy isn't the answer. He suggests that more policies targeted toward specific sex offenders and how they recruit or single out their child victims would be much more appropriate. This is Joe Kleinsasser at Wichita State University.

Sound bite #1
Alexander explains what his research involved. The sound bite is 18 seconds and the outcue is "turning points in their lives."

Alexander: "What I was looking at for my study was basically how sex offenders recruit their child victims, where they recruit their child victims from and how they do that, and track that across the life course to see how recruitment changes based on turning points in their lives."

Sound bite #2
Alexander says most sex offenders know the victim. The sound bite is 18 seconds and the outcue is "the child actually knows."

Alexander: "Another misperception is that a lot of sex offenses take place at the hands of somebody that's a stranger to the victim, when indeed, if we look at the data again, the data tells us that the vast majority of people that perpetrate sex crimes against children, the child actually knows."

Sound bite #3
Alexander says most sex offenders do not recruit or target children in buffer zones. The sound bite is 38 seconds and the outcue is "parks and playgrounds."

Alexander: "In looking at dealing where sex offenders target their child victims, the public often thinks that, or seems to view that, children are targeted from places where children congregate, like schools, pools, parks and playgrounds. Plus, legislation such as buffer zones in places that limit where sex offenders live has been enacted to really kind of play into that sense of inner belief, when in fact, if we look at where this occurs, we find that sex offenders by and large do not recruit or target children from schools, pools, parks and playgrounds."

Sound bite #4
Alexander says high-profile sex crimes are usually the exception and not the norm. The sound bite is 16 seconds and the outcue is "than the norm."

Alexander: "It seems that high-profile sex crimes cases, especially when they're perpetrated against children, grab the public's attention, and then we see legislation that results from these high-profile cases, when, in fact, those cases are usually the exception rather than the norm."

Sound bite #5
Alexander says a one-size-fits-all approach to sex crimes is not very efficient. The sound bite is 20 seconds and the outcue is "much more appropriate."

Alexander: "It appears that having policies that are essentially one-size-fit-all or blanket type of policies aren't very efficient, when policies maybe that are more targeted toward specific sex offenders and how they recruit or target their child victims would be much more appropriate."

Sounds bite #6
Alexander says a targeted approach to sex offenders is more appropriate and efficient. The sound bite is 22 seconds and the outcue is "toward children."

Alexander: "And I think a targeted approach toward certain sex offenders and how they recruit child victims is certainly a more appropriate and more efficient way to handle that entire issue, as far as when you look at community safety or safety specifically toward children."

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Contact: Ryan Alexander, (316) 978-5500 or ryan.alexander@wichita.edu.