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Miami sex offenders to be relocated

Posted on July 22, 2009 3:00 AM EST

An article recently published in the Miami Herald is a prime example of the importance in retaining a highly qualified Miami criminal lawyer with expertise in defending sex cases. Entering a plea to a sexual offense in Miami can lead to unforeseen problems, such as finding a suitable and legal residence.

Officials in Miami, Florida are increasing their efforts to remove a colony of convicted sex offenders living under the Julia Tuttle Causeway. Miami-Dade officials and advocates for the homeless are facing growing criticism for the 70 sex offenders living under the causeway with terrible living conditions. In response the criticism, officials are attempting to obtain housing for the Miami sex offenders.

Ronald Book, the Chairman of Miami-Dade's Homeless trust, stated that they have relocated eight sex offenders to an apartment building in Miami, Florida. Officials are looking for a bigger place for the remaining individuals to be housed. Book also stated that the move is positive, however a permanent solution for the problem for the encampment must be found. Possible locations for the offenders include the old North Dade Detention Center, diverly used as a jail near the Golden Glades Interchange on the Miami-Ft. Lauderdale Border.

The majority of residents of the encampment are registered sex offenders convicted of sexual battery, lewd and lascivious behavior, child sex abuse and statutory rape. The felons are recently released from prison or serving long probationary periods. The individuals are forced to live under the causeway because they no other place to reside. County and city laws prohibit the sex offenders from residing with 2,500 feet of schools, playgrounds, parks and day care facilities - any location where children congregate.

According the Miami-Dade County State Attorney, Katherine Fernandez-Rundle, "It's a public safety issue. They are living in inhumane conditions. It's not safe for them - and it's not safe for others". Several issues linger as to who will bear the expense for rent in liability insurance. Another problem is determining who will supervise the offenders. Book suggested that an apartment building or diver hotel in foreclosure may be a perfect fit.

The ACLU sued Miami-Dade County claiming that the State of Florida promulgated a law that prohibits sex offenders from residing 1,000 feet from where children congregate and that the 2,500 foot laws passed by the City and the County are too stringent and therefore unconstitutional.

Miami-Dade Plans to Relocate Sex Offenders Living under Bridge, Sun Sentinel, July 22, 2009
Categories: Sex Offenses