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Molesters' Recidivism

October 02, 2003

I was dismayed to see blatant misinformation in the Sept. 29 letter that claimed that "study after study has shown" that people convicted of child molestation "are incapable of being cured." It said this crime had a 100% recidivism rate and that convicted child molesters should be "locked up for life ... with the first conviction."

Reputable sources such as the Department of Justice state that "child molesters had a 13% reconviction rate for sexual offenses," which is lower than for rapists (19%) and much lower than reconviction rates for general property and drug offenders, which is well over 50%. (See www.csom.org/pubs/mythsfacts .html.) Other recent studies corroborate this.

Elaine Halleck

Vista

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