Online Resources

  • www.mass.gov/sorb/
    This is the state's Sex Offender Registry Board website. A person can see who is a sex offender by city or town.

  • www.megans-law.net/Megan-Kanka.asp
    This website describes how Megan's Law, which allows people access to sex offender information, came into being. It was signed by President Clinton on May 8, 1996. The website has links to all 50 states and Washington, D.C. and the information and resources regarding each state's sex offenders.

  • www.csom.org
    The Center for Sex Offender Management is a national project that supports state and local jurisdictions in the effective management of sex offenders under community supervision. Downloadable CSOM publications are available here. Published March 2005

Available Books and Articles:


Sex Offenders in Massachusetts: Shattering Myths.
Cicchetti, Carmen A., Anne Powell and Laura Lempicki.
Boston: Mass. Trial Court, Office of the Commissioner, 2000.
MR 460.M3 S49 2000.

This report analyzes the criminal and delinquent records of all persons charged with a sex offense in 1988. The number of persons was 3211. The number of crimes was nearly 6400. The median age for committing crimes was 29 for adults and 16 for juveniles. These crimes were committed by males 95% of the time. There are numerous tables (12), a list of sources, and a list of various sex crimes (34) and the number of arraignments for each.


The constitutionality of statutes requiring convicted sex offenders to register with law enforcement.
National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, 1994.
Information File - Sex Crimes (Located at the State Library)

Constitutional challenges to sex offender registration statutes most frequently arise under state and federal constitutional provisions relating to punishment. These include the prohibition against ex post facto laws and the Eighth Amendment's prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment. Some courts, such as the Supreme Courts of Arizona, Illinois, and Washington State, have characterized the registration requirement as non-punitive. Courts of other states, such as California, hold that the registration requirement is "punishment" within the Eighth Amendment, but not "cruel and unusual" punishment prohibited by the Constitution.


Sex offenses and offenders: an analysis of data on rape and sexual assault.
Greenfeld, Lawrence A.
Washington, D.C.: Bureau of Justice Statistics, 1997.
Information File - Sex Crimes (Located at the State Library)


This report draws on more than two dozen statistical datasets maintained by the Bureau of Justice Statistics and the Uniform Crime Reporting Program of the FBI to provide a comprehensive overview of current knowledge about the incidence and prevalence of violent victimization by sexual assault, the response of the justice system to such crimes and the characteristics of those who prey on victims of all ages by committing sexual assault or rape. Data drawn from police-recorded incidents of rape in three states revealed that 44% of rape victims were under the age of 18.


A guide to sex offender registration and community notification in Illinois: Sex offender registration program.
Chicago, Ill.: Illinois State Police, 1996.
Information File - Sex Crimes (Located at the State Library)

Some topics covered include the history of the Sex Offender Registration in Illinois (730 ILCS 150 et seq.), qualifying felony sex offenses under the new legislation, genetic marker (DNA) indexing program, access to sex offender registration records, and penalty for failing to register


What causes men's violence against women?
Harway, Michele and James M. O'Neill, eds.
Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications, 1999.
HV 1441.4 .W48 1999

This book uses theoretical perspectives to articulate the potential causes of men's violence against women. It summarizes the importance of identifying men's risk factors in order to prevent future violence. The editors develop thirteen preliminary hypotheses. In subsequent chapters the contributing authors critique or react to the methodology and conclusions that the editors devised and present their own ideas.


Log-ons jam sex offender Web pages
Worcester Telegram & Gazette
August 5, 2004, p. A1.

A web site where the public can find the addresses and photos of the state's most dangerous sex offenders was inundated on its first day of operation. Massachusetts joined 42 other states that post information about sex offenders on the internet. Information about 975 sex offenders was posted on the site as of September 29, 2004.


Myths and facts about sex offenders
Washington, D.C.: Center for Sex Offender Management, 2000.
Information File - Sex Crimes (Located at the State Library)

One of the myths that is challenged is that most sexual assaults are committed by strangers. Most sexual assaults are committed by someone known to the victim or the victim's family, regardless of whether the victim is a child or an adult.


National conference on sex offender registries
Washington, D.C.: Bureau of Justice Statistics, 1998.
KF 9325 .A17 1997

Twenty-two persons presented papers on various topics: They include arguments used to challenge notification laws and the governments response; a review of the New York state sex offender registration act; the Florida, California and Illinois act; collaboration between lawmakers and justice agencies is required to create effective sex offender legislation.

One story told is the Jacob Wetterling story about a boy, his brother, and a friend who were riding bicycles home from a video store. Two boys were told to run but Jacob was kidnapped. His mother worked on getting a sex offender registry in Minnesota.


An overview of sex offender management.
Washington, D.C.: Center for Sex Offender Management, 2002.
Information File - Sex Crimes (Located at the State Library)

This document describes briefly the characteristics of sex offenders and their victims, as well as ideal components for managing sex offenders in the community. At a minimum, sex offenders are best managed by multidisciplinary teams that include supervisory probation or parole agents and treatment providers who work together to individualize supervision and treatment plans according to the unique challenges of each offender.


National Sex Offender Registry Assistance Program: Fiscal Year 1998 Program Announcement
Washington, D.C.: Bureau of Justice Statistics, 1998.
J 29.2: SE 9/2

The National Sex Offender Registry Assistance Program supports the goal of establishing an effective national registry of convicted sex offenders. The program will help states ensure that sex offender registries identify, collect, and properly disseminate relevant information and help states establish appropriate interfaces with the FBI's national system so that State registry information on sex offenders can be obtained and tracked from one jurisdiction to another.


Sex crimes and penalties in Wisconsin.
Ritsche, Daniel F.
Madison, WI: Legislative Reference Bureau, 2001.
Information File - Sex Crimes (Located at the State Library)

The involuntary civil commitment of sexually violent persons was enacted (1993 Wisconsin Act 479) and took effect on June 2, 1994. The act commonly known as the "Sexual Predator Law" created chapter 980, Wisconsin statutes, titled "Sexually Violent Person Commitments." Other topics include registration, notification, and testing, summary of sex crimes and penalties, and sex crimes against children.



Indecent Exposure: newspaper coverage of sex offender registry information
Strupp, Joe.
Editor & Publisher, April 1, 2004.
Infotrac General Reference (Located at the State Library)

Various newspapers have different practices publishing information from a sex offender registry. The Boston Herald featured a two-part series which resulted in a month-long search for unregistered offenders. They reported that 33% of the state's registered sex criminals were listed with the wrong addresses. The article presented photos, backgrounds, and other descriptions of 12 registered offenders including many photographed right outside their homes.

"We don't need to list them," says John Carroll, editor of the Los Angeles Times, which has covered the sex offender registry without providing lists. However The Star Press of Muncie, Indiana published photos of 63 registered sex offenders on page one. "The registry was not well-known among the populace," says Evan Miller, the paper's executive editor.

The Boston Globe, which does not run regular registry updates, looks into the issue when related stories emerge, according to editor Martin Baron.
 




This information is provided by The State Library of Massachusetts.