Sex Offender Civil Commitment: The Treatment Paradox

16 Feb 2011 10:06am Jeslyn A. Miller 

Twenty-one states and the federal government have civil commitment schemes that provide for the further confinement of sex offenders after they have completed their prison sentences. These schemes survive constitutional scrutiny on the grounds that they are not a second prison sentence, but rather serve the non-criminal ends of protecting society and helping treat violent sex offenders. The underlying legislation confirms the treatment objective by elaborating statutory guidelines for treatment programs.

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