Alice Sebold’s bestseller 1999 memoir LuckyThis story is about a young woman who was raped while she attended Syracuse University. The book tells the story of a rapist who is eventually caught and convicted. Sebold was inspired to create the best-selling book after writing about it. The Lovely BonesThe fictional story of a teenage girl who was raped by her father and later killed. Anthony Broadwater served 16 years of his sentence for seborating Sebold. He was finally exonerated last week.
Timothy Mucciante, a producer Film adaptations of the book are in progress LuckyAfter raising doubts about Sebold’s story’s inconsistencies, Mucciante was fired. Mucciante has a background in law and began to review the files. He became more disturbed by the discrepancies between Sebold’s memoir and actual facts, until he was forced to “Can’t get to sleep.” Mucciante eventually hired a private detective to continue the investigation. The case was finally closed. Broadwater’s conviction turns out to have rested on shaky evidence: Sebold had had trouble identifying her assailant—she had initially picked a different man out of a lineup—and the only forensic evidence was a form of hair analysis that the government now considers junk science. The expert witness was unable to confirm that Broadwater’s attacker had hair that “consisted” with Broadwater, but could not say it in any other way. WasHe shaved his head.
Broadwater, who was released in 1999, was put on the New York Sex Offender Registry. He remained there until just a few days before his release. Broadwater’s case is a stark reminder of the inhumanity that sex offences registries can be.
Broadwater got married in prison but never had children. TelledSyracuse Post-StandardHe didn’t want his children growing up with a dad who was convicted for rape. The newspaper reports that he had been “accommodated” while he was away.He was denied a lot of educational and job opportunities throughout his career because he is a convicted rapist in the sex-offender registry.Nearly one million Americans are on these registries. They know the story and realize that it has a negative impact on their loved ones. Public postings of every registrant’s name, address and crime result in infamy, as well as very limited employment opportunities.
Broadwater served effectively two sentences. One in prison and one on his registry upon release. Broadwater is still in New York after being convicted. Clean slate billTo help people with previous convictions to get more housing or employment, criminal records would be automatically erased after three years of misdemeanors. Seven years for felonies. It does not include sex crimes, which is highlighted in the literature supporting the bill.
But Even the guilty can be forgivenThese people don’t merit this kind of treatment. These registries have devastating consequences, as Broadwater and others detail. AfterThe sentences of those who were convicted are complete. TPeople convicted in minor cases, those convicted for statutory or noncontact offenses and persons with developmental disabilities, mental illness struggles, substance use disorders, and other conditions are also included on the registries.
Broadwater stated in his Syracuse.com interview that he attempted to enroll in vocational classes following his release, but was kicked from campus by administrators after they discovered he had been on the register. Broadwater may have been innocent but should those who are looking for stability and work after being imprisoned not be denied access to education?
Higher Education Recent reportsColleges are “stepping up their efforts to help students who were in or have been in prison” due to a growing interest in racial injustice. Bipartisan consensus is that this smart, ethical investment is sound. It was a program I co-founded. St. Francis College. These efforts like New York’s Clean Slate Bill often exclude people from registries. Even if states and institutions don’t ask potential participants for their criminal history, federal lawNot like those convicted for nonsexual offenses but on registries, it is required that anyone who enrolls in the registry notify the state of their participation. This can often lead to an administrative backlash.
Myths surrounding recidivism, and the people who end up on registries are some of the reasons for “carve outs” in sex offenses. Contrary to common belief, people with convictions for sex crimes actually do have Lower recidivism RatesThey are more likely to be convicted than of other crimes (a conviction unfortunately reinforced by the Supreme Court which mistakenly declared that the rate for sex crime recidivism “High and frightening“). A third of all the almost 3,000 records have been documented. ExonerationsSince 1989, sex crime has been a part of the criminal justice system. About 13% of prisoners are womenAre you being charged with a sexual offense?
Fear and emotion are stronger than data. This is reinforced by the cultural obsession with statistically rare and terrifying instances of stranger danger, despite the overwhelming majority of sexual violence against both. ChildrenAnd Adults involves nonstrangers). Books like Sebold are a great way to reinforce this..
Broadwater is alleged to have lived in “a secluded area” for some time.Windowless filth“I didn’t know his role in Sebold’s autobiography or how much fame and fortune it gave me.” In The New York TimesBroadwater RecalledHis registrant years were marked by “stigma and isolation”. Post-prison treatment does not guarantee safety and success. Research has shown that the registries of sex offenses haven’t made America’s children safer. Data also reveal a long-lasting, consistent pattern. ReceiptChild sex offences that were started Prior to the introduction of registries.
Things must change.
While colleges should still lead reforms in criminal justice, they must also be open to new offences-blind admissions that welcome all students. We should not make those who have served their sentences unworthy or denied a second chance.