Monday, March 15, 2010

Department Of Corrections Responds To Level Three Sex Offender Concentration Issues In North Minneapolis...

Photo by John Hoff

In the image above, a playground on a block of Glenwood Ave. where more than one Level Three sex offender is known to reside.

Anyway...

Stirred by the debate on this blog about Level Three sex offenders being dumped in North Minneapolis despite a statute to the contrary, a good citizen and regular reader wrote an email to Bobbie Chevalier-Jones.

Chevalier-Jones is the ISR agent whose caseload includes Peter Rickmyer a.k.a. Peter Richard Stephenson, known to many as "Pete The Pedophile," whose gibberish-filled so-called "lawsuit" woke up North Minneapolis to the issue of L3SOs dumped in our neighborhood.

Recently, I sent an email to Chevalier-Jones requesting that Peter Rickmyer not be allowed to use his precious two hours a week of supervised internet time to view this blog, since this blog sometimes contains pictures of minors in the neighborhood, including my own son. But neither Chevalier-Jones nor her supervisor, Russell Stricker, have bothered to respond. Rumor has it Chevalier-Jones received some kind of "probation officer of the year" award. JNS blog is still working to confirm that.

In any case, here is the email in question, verbatim...


I am responding to your email that ISR agent, Bobbie Chevalier-Jones forwarded to me. Thank you for taking the time to voice your concerns regarding this very difficult and complicated issue of high concentrations of Level III sex offenders in North Minneapolis. I wish there was an easy solution but the reasons for the problem are multiple and involve many factors that are out of our control.

It first might be helpful if I briefly try to explain our role and responsibility. Hennepin County's Department of Community Corrections and Rehabilitation through our Intensive Supervised Release Unit is responsible for providing supervision to Level III Sex Offenders upon their release from a Minnesota Correctional Facility who have time remaining on their sentences. Intensive Supervision provides for the highest level of community surveillance and supervision that we have available. Primary elements of the program includes face-to-face contacts (at offender's residence and place of employment) and supervision provided by specially trained agents with small caseloads (maximum of 15 offenders per agent), house arrest, electronic monitoring and GPS, strict curfews, mandatory work or school, random drug testing and programming that addresses offender risk factors, e.g., lack of employment and suitable housing, drug/alcohol dependency, sexual deviance, anti-social attitudes and offender associations.

In Hennepin County most Level III offenders first go to a half-way house when they are released. Typically they have 60 days to find employment and a residence. If they do not find either they could be found in violation of their Conditions of Release and returned to the institution for a limited amount of time. Finding housing is ultimately their responsibility. We do not place Level III offenders in North Minneapolis. If an offender finds housing that is not in violation of any of their conditions of supervision we are required to approve it.

In my opinion part of the overall problem is that there is not available low cost housing throughout the State Also many landlords will not rent to sex offenders. However, in several North Minneapolis neighborhoods there are both low cost housing and a number of landlords willing to rent to sex offenders.

(JNS interjects: Name them.)

There is no question that it would be better if offender housing was more available in other communities but we have no influence over that issue. As you point out, this problem has gotten worse in the last several years. We have tried to do what we can to limit the number of sex offenders who committed their offenses out side of Hennepin County and want to transfer to here because they found housing in North Minneapolis. If they do not have relatives or a support system here we have rejected those transfers.

In addition to those offenders under supervision this problem is exasperated by the hundreds of sex offenders who may be required to register but who no longer are under supervision. We have absolutely no control over them and they are free to reside any where they can find housing. Obviously a number of them found housing in North Minneapolis. There are other issues with the housing of sex offenders such as the "homeless problem" but that discussion is too lengthy to cover here. I do wish I could be more helpful but hopefully you have a better understanding of the issue and our role in its resolution.

Russell Stricker, Supervisor
Intensive Supervision Program
Hennepin County Dept. of Community Corrections
2600 East 25th Street, Suite B
Minneapolis, MN 5540

JNS responds: This letter is a cop out. You're not supposed to concentrate the Level Three sex offenders and yet, by your own admission, you concentrate them in my neighborhood.

But let's take some of the criteria you mention and see how you, Russ Stricker, have failed to enforce those standards with Peter Rickmyer, a.k.a. Pete The Pedophile.

1. Lack of employment. A draft of Peter's pro-se, in forma pauperis filing (which fell into my hands) lists four forms of public assistance Peter is receiving. So where is the evidence of a job, other than the fact neighborhood residents sometimes see him pulling weeds and picking up litter? (Just to say one little thing in Pete's defense, the man is known to be a human weed wacker. Which, when you think about it, kinda makes sense)

2. Anti-social attitudes. Well, I would think filing two legal actions against "church ladies" for telling him to leave when children were present, plus Pete's habit of doing his passive-aggressive "in your face" talking about children thing...these are anti-social attitudes. (Examples: trying to approach Council Member Don Samuels to talk about lead paint exposure in children. Addressing a meeting of JACC and talking about PTSD in children who live in North Minneapolis)

Pete's lawsuit against, well, EVERYBODY is evidence of an anti-social attitude, and it happened right under the nose of Bobbie Chevalier-Jones. It appears these folks at DOC were so afraid of a lawsuit from Pete Rickmyer AGAINST THE DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS that they gave Rickmyer plenty of latitude to frolic around, upsetting church ladies and doing his garbled so-called lawsuit thing. DOC is letting down my neighborhood, with the excuse there are factors "beyond our control."

Well, add this blog to the factors "beyond your control."

It's really quite simple: if concentration of these sick puppies can't be avoided, then the sick puppies need to stay in the halfway houses or at the facility in Moose Lake until it CAN be avoided. Don't be dumping all their rank, sorry asses in one neighborhood, which happens to be mine.


10 comments:

Kevin said...

"high concentrations of Level III sex offenders in North Minneapolis. I wish there was an easy solution but the reasons for the problem are multiple and involve many factors that are out of our control."

Translation:

The better communities in MN are too well organized and hold their public officials to a much higher standard than North Mpls. ever has. If we tried to house sex offenders in these communities, there would be an uproar unparalleled in MN politic or MN history. Since North Mpls. has traditionally been the dumping ground for every other social problem, why change now? After all, we know people really don't care, your public officials really don't care and to be perfectly honest about it, we doubt there's anything you can do."

Anonymous said...

The meail (you received says:

Primary elements of the program includes face-to-face contacts (at offender's residence and place of employment) and supervision provided by specially trained agents with small caseloads (maximum of 15 offenders per agent), house arrest, electronic monitoring and GPS, strict curfews, mandatory work or school, random drug testing and programming that addresses offender risk factors, e.g., lack of employment and suitable housing, drug/alcohol dependency, sexual deviance, anti-social attitudes and offender associations.

Anonoymous says:

If you read the last sentence carefully (as conditions of parole/risk factors) it states "and offender associations". How in the world could you NOT construe this as a risk factor when L3SO's are, in some cases, residing in the same apratment complex?

Anonymous said...

Or, more to the point. Why isn't the well-being of the community(s) being factored into the "risk factors" listed?

Anonymous said...

I think it is important to remember that DOC has no control over where L3SO's reside that aren't on probation, but DOC should probably consider that in placement.

The law is going to have to change before anything is done about it. And I firmly believe that as long as there are more legislators everywhere else than there are in NoMi that it won't happen. But since I don't live in NoMi, to be quite honest, I'm happy to have them concentrated there if they have to be somewhere.

Anonymous said...

So the DOC says "Its not our fault." If they won't do anything, who CAN we turn to with this problem? I have a sinking feeling if the offenders are kicked out of the northside, there will be a lot more homeless sex offenders with less of an ability to watchdog them. Lets face it, suburban community leaders will NEVER allow them to move into their neighborhoods - too powerful/rich/well-connected. You gotta remember too that northside elected community leaders haven't said jack about them in the past (assuming, correct me if I'm wrong), so maybe they don't give a hoot either. Again, the only thing I see happening from all this is more homeless/unwatchable L3SOs.

Pond Dragon said...

Maybe it is time to Picket the landlords at their residence or perhaps place of work?

Johnny Northside said...

Absolutely. And we've already dug up a few of those names on this blog. But to find out who they are, more addresses need to be dug up.

My call for this information is still active. If you know where a Level Three sex offender lives in North Minneapolis, contact me. And, believe me, behind the scenes I continue to dig, and I'm not alone...

Hillside Chronicles said...

Gez, that's some response.

Sometimes I think we have to remind folks that some of us are raising families here in NoMi.

That's it, you gone and done it! said...

Well if that is the case, then perhaps we should start doing what the "upscale" counterparts do in times like these! No matter what it says on the address neighbors have the RIGHT to put up fliers with a photo of the sex offender, since it is public information. So if the address says 2300 block of 3rd Ave north place fliers on every poll in a four block radius. That is my two cents.

MeganG. said...

Peter's time to shine:

http://www.citypages.com/2010-03-17/news/peter-rickmyer-northside-gadfly-or-real-pain-in-the-ass/