Chapter 9.94A RCW
Study of sex offender sentencing alternative.
(1) The Washington state institute for public policy shall conduct a comprehensive analysis and evaluation of the impact and effectiveness of current sex offender sentencing policies. The institute shall analyze and evaluate the effectiveness of sex offender policies and programs, including the special sex offender sentencing alternative, the department of corrections’ treatment program for offenders in prison, and the validity of the risk assessment conducted by the end of sentence review committee prior to release from prison. Using detailed information from offender files and court records, and research conducted in Washington state and other states and nations, the analysis shall examine whether changes to sentencing policies and sex offender programming can increase public safety.
(2) Using the research results and other available data, the analysis of the special sex offender sentencing alternative shall specifically evaluate the impact of the sentencing alternative on protection of children from sexual victimization, reporting of sex offenses against children, prosecution of sex offenses against children, and child sex offense recidivism rates.
(3) As part of its study, the institute shall also investigate the views of victims whose cases resulted in a special sex offender sentencing alternative sentence. This study shall include victims whose cases have been prosecuted recently, as well as those whose cases were prosecuted in the past. The victims shall be asked whether they considered the special sex offender sentencing alternative sentence to be a just and appropriate sanction, whether it influenced their healing process, and, if so, whether the influence was negative or positive.
(4) The sentencing guidelines commission shall review the following issues to determine whether modifications in the special sex offender sentencing alternative will increase its effectiveness with respect to protecting children from sexual victimization, successfully prosecuting sex offenses against children, and appropriately punishing perpetrators of sex offenses against children:
(a) Eligibility for the sentencing alternative, including whether the commission of certain types of offenses should render an offender ineligible, whether the disclosure of multiple victims in the course of evaluating an offender should render an offender ineligible, and whether the sentencing alternative should be limited to offenses within families;
(b) Minimum terms of incarceration, including imprisonment in a state facility;
(c) Appropriate conditions or restrictions that should be placed on offenders who receive a sentence alternative; and
(d) Standards for revocation of a sentencing alternative suspended sentence.
(5) The institute and the sentencing guidelines commission shall report their results and recommendations to the appropriate standing committees of the legislature no later than December 31, 2004.
Severability -- 2004 c 176: "If any provision of this act or its application to any person or circumstance is held invalid, the remainder of the act or the application of the provision to other persons or circumstances is not affected." [2004 c 176 § 8.]
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