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Sex Offender Civil Commitment

During the past 15 years, sex offender civil commitment laws have emerged that require some dangerous sex offenders to receive involuntary treatment in a secure facility after their criminal incarceration. Following an assessment of risk, sex offenders who are considered likely to re-offend are entitled to a trial with a judge or jury, where evidence of their dangerousness is presented. If they are found to meet statutory criteria for civil commitment, they are detained, with yearly evaluations, until they are considered no longer dangerous to the community. Sexually violent predator (SVP) statutes seek to prevent the recurrence of sexual victimization by incapacitating potentially violent and dangerous sexual offenders. Though it is well established that a proportion of sex offenders are dangerous and likely to re-offend, ...

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