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  • Monday, November 06, 2006

    A Double Standard When Homosexuals Get Arrested

    Double Standards for Homosexuals
    When it comes to the legal system, everyone is treated fairly and equally. That is unless you are gay, then you find yourself in a witch hunt of the worst kind.

    By Kathie Gouraly
    Posted Monday, October 2, 2006

    They reneged on their promise to let Ken turn himself in and instead brought tv cameras and reporters to his house to publicly arrest him.
    Readers of this web site are probably aware of the cases of Ken Gourlay and Tim Richards, both of whom are being prosecuted because of allegations by Justin Berry, who is making his accusations in exchange for U. S. Federal immunity from his own numerous crimes, not least of which is producing child pornography with himself as the child star.

    Ken's case is being prosecuted by the Michigan Attorney General, while Tim's is being prosecuted in Tennessee by the U. S. Department of Justice, but both are being prosecuted with overwhelming unfairness and with the hysterical tone of a witch hunt.

    Ken's case in particular seems to be fodder for the reelection campaign of Michigan Attorney General Michael Cox. Democrat Amos Williams is running against Cox. We believe that if Williams were the Attorney General now, Ken would not be under state prosecution.

    Regardless of whether Ken is guilty or innocent, the Attorney General's office has handled Ken's case unjustly in the following ways:

    1) They reneged on their promise to let Ken turn himself in and instead brought tv cameras and reporters to his house to publicly arrest him.

    2) They set a half-million dollar bond for this non-violent offender with no previous criminal record.

    3) In September after discovering that Ken's family had managed to combine resources and pay the bond, they re-arrested Ken with new charges based on information that they had had for 6 weeks but had chosen not to use before.

    4) When Ken turned himself in they again alerted and had tv news there.

    5) This arrest was coordinated with arrests of seventeen other alleged sex criminals on the same day, an event which the Attorney General publicized with a press conference.

    6) This distorted publicity might prejudice thousands of potential jury members, and prevent Ken from getting a fair trial,

    7) Ken's new charges were most unusual, 20 charges instead of 1, all for 3rd degree (consensual) sexual conduct with the same person.

    8) Instead of a normal sized bond for these charges, and after Cox's prosecuting attorney repeatedly said he saw no need for more bond money, at the arraignment the A.G.'s office asked for an additional one million dollar bond (appearing to be violating the 8th amendment of the Constitution). The purpose of bond is not to keep someone in jail, but to assure that he/she appears in court. All Ken's charges require a bond, ie. they are "bondable".

    9) Although Cox has disclaimers on his website saying that the accused are considered innocent until proven guilty, the words and actions of his office negate this.

    Although we feel that child sex crimes can be very serious, not all of them are equally so. The obsession of the Michigan Attorney General's office with this issue is working to Michigan's detriment.

    Instead, we believe Michigan should be moving forward on a more effective path. We desire a Michigan Attorney General who:

    1) Gives attention to ALL types of crimes. In particular, those crimes that extend beyond the bounds of a single local judiciary or involve the local government itself - corporate crimes, utility company crimes, environmental crimes, crimes by the police.

    2) Sets the highest ethical standards for fairness, due process, and civil rights.

    3) Respects and defends an accused person's constitutional right to the presumption of innocence. Does not hold press conferences announcing arrests and does not parade arrested people in chains before television cameras.

    4) Does not use high bonds deliberately to detain people.

    5) Does not prosecute homosexuals more severely than heterosexuals accused of the same type of crime.

    6) Prosecutes offenders of hate crimes against gays and perceived child offenders, both inside and outside prisons, whether perpetrated by inmates or guards, and educates the public to reduce hate crimes.

    7) Encourages judges to take into account the circumstances when creating a sentence.

    8) Recommends safe, but less severe punishments to encourage sex offenders and their acquaintances to voluntarily come forward.

    9) Uses best known sex therapies and electronic monitoring instead of prison to keep society safe, while at the same time saving taxpayer money, minimizing disruption to families, and allowing sex offenders to contribute to society as much as possible.

    10) Does not use stings to create criminals.

    11) Does not grant immunity in exchange for incriminating evidence.

    This is unfair and produces unreliable evidence.

    Other issues raised by Ken's case:

    1) The media are sensationalizing the case: by using terms such as Ken "lured" Justin to Ann Arbor; calling criminal sexual conduct in the 3rd degree, which is consensual sex, a "rape"; and by reporting Ken's age as a year older than it is.

    2) Ken is being treated as guilty before being convicted. Did you know 60% of the people in Michigan jails are there pre-trial? The UN recommends holding such people, if they must be detained at all, in separate facilities from convicted criminals.

    3) Ken is being charged with various crimes, and also being charged separately with using the Internet to facilitate those crimes. The Internet charges actually have harsher penalties than the crimes themselves. Why should use of the Internet to plan a crime have a harsher sentence than the crime itself? Why is using the Internet different than using the phone, or using the mail?

    4) The U. S. has extremely long sentences and harsh penalties compared to other countries in the world. Did you know that of the 9 million people in prison in the world, 2 million of them are in the United States? Google "The Sentencing Project".

    5) The U. S. is schizophrenic about sex. Almost everything is
    sexualized: movies, music, clothes, magazines, even cars. Sex is on teenagers minds more than anything else. If two 15 year olds have sex it is considered "sexual experimentation", however if a 15 year old and an 18 year old have sex it is a 15 year felony. Neither of these situations are necessarily good, moral, or appropriate, but they are not very different from each other.

    6) Sex offenders are subject to unique, unreasonable, lifetime penalties. Shouldn't it be possible at some point to say someone has been punished enough? Why should former sex criminals have to register for the rest of their lives, when murderers and other assaultive offenders don't have to? Why should former sex criminals be prevented from living near schools or playgrounds when murderers and assaultive criminals can live there. Why should these penalties extend even to someone who was found to have pornography or to have consensual sex with someone they shouldn't have? Why should former sex offenders be forbidden from holding more and more kinds of jobs?

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