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Two Strikes Law for Sex Offenders - S.B. 46

by Senator Shapiro

House Sponsors: Representatives Wolens and Greenberg

§ Automatically sentences a person to life imprisonment if that person has been convicted of certain sex offenses two times. Under this sentence, the felon will serve at least 35 years in prison after which time there is an option for parole, if two-thirds of the parole board agrees.

§ Requires the second felony conviction to be an aggravated sexual assault, sexual assault, aggravated kidnapping with the intent to commit a sex offense, or burglary with the intent to commit a sex offense.

§ Requires the previous felony conviction to have been one of the four crimes mentioned above, various offenses involving sexual performance by a child, possession or promotion of child pornography, indecency with a child, or incest.

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Voluntary Castration for Sex Offenders - S.B. 123

by Senator Bivins

House Sponsor: Representative Gallego

§ Allows a doctor employed or retained by the Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) to perform an orchiectomy (surgical castration) on repeat child molesters if certain conditions are met, including, but not limited to:

§ the inmate is 21 years or older;

§ the inmate requests the orchiectomy in writing;

§ the inmate signs an admission of guilt of the crimes for which the inmate was convicted; and

§ a psychiatrist or psychologist who is experienced in the treatment of sex offenders and is appointed by TDCJ determines the inmate is a suitable candidate for the procedure and counsels the inmate before the procedure.

§ Provides that a doctor who performs an orchiectomy is not liable for an act or omission relating to the procedure, unless the act or omission constitutes negligence.

§ Allows the inmate to change his decision to undergo the orchiectomy at any time before the performance of the procedure. An inmate who changes his decision becomes ineligible for the orchiectomy treatment option in the future.

§ Requires the executive director of the Texas State Board of Medical Examiners to appoint a monitor to assist an inmate in his decision to have an orchiectomy.

§ Provides that the monitor is not liable for damages arising from an act or omission, unless the act or omission was intentional or grossly negligent.

§ Requires TDCJ to conduct a ten-year recidivism rate study on those who undergo an orchiectomy, and compare the results to the recidivism of child molesters who have not undergone an orchiectomy.

§ Prohibits a judge or a parole panel from requiring an inmate to undergo an orchiectomy as a condition of community supervision, parole, or mandatory supervision.

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Prosecution of Certain Sexual Assaults Committed Against Children - S.B. 185

by Senator Shapiro

House Sponsor: Representative Dunnam, et al.

§ Expands offenses under the sexual assault and aggravated sexual assault sections of the Penal Code to include an offense if the person causes the mouth of a child to contact the anus or sexual organ of another person, including the actor.

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Grant of Deferred Adjudication and Prosecution for Certain Sexual Offenders - S.B. 381

by Senator Shapiro

House Sponsor: Representative Goodman, et al.

§ Provides that a judge may not place a defendant charged with indecency with a child, sexual assault, or aggravated sexual assault on community supervision, unless the judge finds that community supervision is in the best interest of the victim. Failure to make such a finding is not grounds for the defendant to set aside the plea, deferred adjudication, or any subsequent conviction or sentence.

§ Provides that a judge may not grant deferred adjudication to a defendant who is charged with indecency with a child, sexual assault, aggravated sexual assault, or other felonies enumerated in this section, and has previously been placed under community supervision for any such offense.

§ Provides that for more than one offense arising out of the same criminal episode, the sentences may run concurrently or consecutively if each sentence was for a conviction of an offense concerning indecency with a child, sexual assault, aggravated sexual assault, prohibited sexual conduct, or sexual performance by a child:

§ in which the victim was younger than 17 years of age, regardless of whether the accused is convicted of more than one violation of the same offense or violations of more than one offense; or

§ for which a plea agreement was reached in a case in which the accused was charged with more than one such offense committed against a victim younger than 17 years of age, regardless of whether the accused is convicted of more than one violation of the same offense or violations of more than one offense.

§ Provides that the defendant does not have the right to severance of offenses joined for trial in a prosecution for offenses concerning indecency with a child, sexual assault, aggravated sexual assault, prohibited sexual conduct, or sexual performance by a child, unless the court determines that either the defendant or the state would be unfairly prejudiced by the joinder of offenses.

§ Provides that for the purposes of determining whether a repeat offender is subject to a life sentence under this section, a defendant shall be deemed to have been previously convicted of certain enumerated sexual offenses if:

§ the defendant was adjudged guilty of the offense or entered a plea of guilty or nolo contendere in return for deferred adjudication, regardless of whether the sentence was ever imposed or was probated, or the defendant was subsequently discharged under community supervision; and

§ the defendant was convicted under another state's laws for an offense containing substantially the same elements as one of the enumerated offenses.

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Sexual Assault by Mental Health Providers - S.B. 542

by Senator Barrientos

House Sponsor: Representative Naishtat

§ Expands the list of those who, under certain conditions, are considered to have committed the crime of sexual assault against a patient to include a physician, a chiropractor, a licensed vocational nurse, a physical therapist, a physician's assistant, a registered nurse, and an advanced practice nurse.

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Child Pornography on the Internet - S.B. 674

by Senator Brown, et al.

House Sponsor: Representative Place

§ Expands the offense of possessing or promoting material depicting a child younger than 18 years of age engaged in sexual conduct to include visual material, rather than only film.

§ Defines visual material as:

§ any film, photograph, videotape, negative, or slide, or any photographic reproduction that contains or incorporates in any manner any film, photograph, videotape, negative, or slide; or

§ any disk, diskette, or other physical medium that allows an image to be displayed on a computer or video screen and any image transmitted to a computer or other video screen by telephone line, cable, satellite transmission, or other method.

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Sex Offender Registration Program - S.B. 875

by Senator Shapiro, et al.

House Sponsor: Representative Danburg, et al.

§ Provides additional regulations regarding the applicability of the sex offender registration program to certain defendants, the procedures used to register and monitor sex offenders, and the imposition of criminal penalties.

§ Includes juveniles placed on probation or persons placed on community supervision for certain sexual offenses as persons required to register in the sex offender registration program.

Forms, Notice, and Information

§ Requires information regarding whether the sex offender registrant is discharged, paroled, or released on juvenile probation, community supervision, or mandatory supervision to be included on the registration form.

§ Requires the registration form to be reviewed for completeness and accuracy.

§ Requires the local law enforcement authority to give notice, not only to the superintendent of the public school district, but also to the administrator of any private school located in the district.

§ Authorizes a private school or administrator of a private school to release to the public certain information regarding a person required to register, and releases the institution and the administrator from liability for damages arising from a legally sanctioned release of the information.

Duties of the Sex Offender Registrant and Law Enforcement

§ Requires juvenile probation officers, probation officers, and parole officers to make a status report to the appropriate law enforcement authority, on the registrant, if the officers receive information that the registrant's status has changed in any manner that will affect the proper supervision of the registrant, including a change in the registrant's physical health, job status, incarceration, or terms of release.

§ Requires the officers to notify the local law enforcement authority with whom the offender last registered of a change of address and the projected moving date of the registrant, even if the registrant is moving out of state.

§ Requires a sex offender registrant who has on two or more occasions been convicted of or received an order of deferred adjudication for a sexually violent offense to report to the local law enforcement authority once every 90 days after first registering to verify the information on the registration form. Other persons must report for information verification once a year.

§ Requires a sex offender registrant, who has been convicted or adjudicated for a sexually violent offense, incest, compelling a minor to commit prostitution, or child pornography to register until he or she dies, unless exempted from this duty by the court.

§ Requires all other sex offender registrants to register for 10 years.

§ Provides that failure to comply with registration requirements on the part of a person required to register is a state jail felony.

§ Limits application of this chapter to a reportable conviction or adjudication occurring on or after September 1, 1991, except that certain provisions relating to the requirement of newspaper publication apply only to a reportable conviction or adjudication occurring on or after September 1, 1995.

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Eligibility for Release on Mandatory Supervision - H.B. 432

by Representative Place, et al.

Senate Sponsor: Senator Whitmire

§ Adds inmates convicted of a third degree felony regarding indecency with a child to the list of offenses precluding early release on mandatory supervision.

Location of Released Sex Offenders - H.B. 658

by Representative Burnam, et al.

Senate Sponsor: Senator Moncrief

§ Requires the pardons and parole division of the TDCJ to notify the sheriff of any county in which the number of sex offenders on parole or mandatory supervision in the county exceeds 10 percent of the total number of supervised or paroled sex offenders in the state.

§ Allows the parole board to limit the number of paroled or supervised sex offenders in a county if the number of paroled or supervised sex offenders exceeds 22 percent of the total number of paroled or supervised sex offenders in the state, with certain exceptions.

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Statute of Limitations for Childhood Sex Abuse - H.B. 921

by Representative Danburg, et al.

Senate Sponsor: Senator Shapiro

§ Increases the statute of limitations for bringing an indictment for sexual offenses committed against children so that felony indictments:

§ for indecency with a child can be brought 10 years from the date of the commission of the offense; and

§ for sexual assault or aggravated sexual assault can be brought 10 years from the 18th birthday of the victim.

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Sexual Relations Between Inmates and Staff - H.B. 2283

by Representative Farrar

Senate Sponsor: Senator Shapiro

§ Makes it a state jail felony for an employee of a correctional facility or a peace officer to have sex with an individual in custody.

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Sex Offender Registration Program/Sunset - H.B. 2699

by Representative Gray, et al.

Senate Sponsor: Senator Brown

§ Provides for the continuation of the Council on Sex Offender Treatment (council) for a 12-year period, and makes various technical statutory modifications recommended by the Sunset Advisory Commission.

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Extended Supervision Period for Sex Offenders - H.B. 2918

by Representative Place, et al.

Senate Sponsor: Senator Whitmire

§ Allows a judge to extend the period of community supervision at any time if a defendant is placed on community supervision after receiving a grant of deferred adjudication for or being convicted of indecency with a child, sexual assault, or aggravated sexual assault.

§ Allows a judge to extend the period of supervision for not more than 10 additional years if the judge determines at a hearing that the defendant has not sufficiently demonstrated a commitment to avoid future criminal behavior and that the release of the defendant would endanger the public.

§ Requires the TDCJ to establish a program to provide super-intensive supervision to inmates requiring the highest level of supervision.

§ Allows TDCJ to use a separate classification system, based on the classes used in determining accrual of good conduct time, that requires inmates who need treatment to diligently participate in treatment, and that makes the award of good conduct time dependent on that diligent participation.