Medication For Sex Offenders?
A new law in Alabama requires sex offenders convicted of crimes against children under the age of 13 to undergo “chemical castration” while on parole. A judge orders the treatment as a condition of release in which a parolee receives a dose of medication called medroxyprogesterone acetate (via injection) one month before leaving prison.
The drug is supposed to block testosterone production in order to decrease a man’s sex drive. Upon leaving prison, the offender must visit the health department for additional treatments at their own expense. However, they cannot be denied parole for their inability to pay.
Appropriate Punishment or
Alabama is one of only eight states — including California, Iowa, and Texas to mandate chemical castration. The new law was signed by Gov. Kay Ivey and went into effect on Sept 1. Lawmakers believe the new law will prevent recidivism in sex offenders but many medical professionals and human rights groups disagree.
Doctors worry about the drug’s potential side effects which may include hair loss, breast growth, weight gain, diabetes, and bone loss. They also say using drugs as a blanketed solution to sex crimes is a slippery slope and should be considered on a case by case basis, especially for parolees with a history of drug abuse and/or mental illness.
The American Civil Liberties Union of Alabama is planning to fight the new law claiming that chemical castration is inhumane and ineffective and violates Alabamians’ rights by forcing them to alter their body chemistry against their will. Lawmakers counter this argument by saying the law only applies when an inmate seeks release on parole and can avoid taking the medication if they opt to serve their entire sentence.
Fight Sex Crime Charges
There are 16,000 registered sex offenders living in Alabama according to Alabama law enforcement agency, or ALEA. If you are facing charges for a sex crime, you need a rigorous defense. Contact the Black Belt Law Group for a free consultation at (866) JTLAW-66.