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Arnold Mooney on Crime

 

 


Chemical castration for sex offenses against children

Gov. Kay Ivey this afternoon signed into law a bill to require sex offenders whose victims are younger than 13 to undergo "chemical castration treatment" as a condition of parole. The treatment consists of taking a medication to suppress or block the production of testosterone.

Other states have passed similar laws, including California and Florida in the 1990s. The Alabama chemical castration law says sex offenders will have to take "medroxyprogesterone acetate treatment or its chemical equivalent, that, among other things, reduces, inhibits, or blocks the production of testosterone, hormones, or other chemicals in a person's body." The law requires the treatment to begin at least one month before a parolee is released.

Legislative Outcome: Passed Senate 27-0-8 on roll call #1423 on May 30; passed House 72-16-16 on roll call #831 on May 21; Rep. Mooney voted YES; signed by Gov. Ivey on June 10.

Source: Birmingham News on Alabama voting records: HB 379 , May 21, 2019

No separate sentencing trial in capital cases

SB 16: Prohibits Judicial Override of Sentencing Decision:

OnTheIssues summary: This bill changes the rules for sentencing in capital cases when choosing death versus life imprisonment. The previous rules had a jury trial with an advisory verdict of life or death, and then a separate sentencing trial, where the judge could override the jury's sentence. The new rules allow the defendant to choose a jury trial or a judge's decision.

ACLU opinion: This new law prevents judges from overriding the will of the community by imposing the death penalty when a jury has recommended life imprisonment. While we applaud this change, Alabama is still the only state that does not require a unanimous jury for the death penalty.

Legislative Outcome: Passed House 78-19-2 in roll call #362 on April 16; Rep. Mooney voted YES (after recording an unintentional NO, 4/4); passed Senate 23-5-0 in roll call #111 on Feb. 23; signed by Gov. Kay Ivey on April 4.

Source: Alabama legislative voting records: SB 16 , Apr 16, 2017

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Page last updated: Jun 23, 2019