Question - is it true you cannot appeal your sex offender case without forfeiting your right to the MOSOP program?
I have a question regarding access into the MOSOP. It is my understanding that the accused has 2 chances to accept entry into this program. If the accused denies both times, they are no longer eligible for the program unless the Parole Board applies for a 3rd consideration.
In our particular case, the accused had taken his case to the appeal process. During the appeals process, he was not able to accept nor deny entry into the program. He did not state that he did not want to enroll in the program, rather, that his case was in the appeals court and would have to wait until completion. However, because his case was in appeals court they (DOC) said that the accused denied entry into the program twice, preventing him from getting into the program.
The reason the accused was appealing the case, of course, was because he felt he is innocent. If he had withdrawn his case and then accepted the program, that is in a sense admitting guilt - which he did not want to do.
I feel this is completely unethical and simply not right. The accused should be able to execute his right of appealing his case without being punished.
Current standings on this case: the parole board did submit for him to be readmitted into the MOSOP, but it was denied. He is now onward to serving his max sentence.
1. an appeal based on innocence means that the offender is not taking responsibility for his crime
2. responsibility for the crime, an examination of the crime, understanding the stressors and thinking patterns of the individual that led to committing the crime are integral parts of the program
3. there are a limited number of spaces available in the program, so "auditing" the program (think sitting through it without doing it, or even being able to contribute to group discussions) takes a space away from an offender who wants to complete the program as a full participant.
4. "auditing" the program would not give the offender the treatment completion necessary to lower his out date
Look, this happens all the time especially with parole board matters - the first thing the parole board wants to hear is remorse, and remorse means taking responsibility for the crime, acknowledging the damage caused by the crime, and taking steps to make sure that such a crime never happens again. When there's an appeal pending, such remorse cannot be expressed by an offender as he cannot take responsibility for a crime he's still stating that he didn't commit. Same thing here. Same thing with other programs for other crimes.
Is he being penalized? Maybe. But the courts do not look at it that way. Program options based on elements of remorse and treatment cannot be done by somebody still stating that he didn't commit the crime. Plenty of people serve their max time for other reasons as well. Sucks that he's sentenced to so short a time that the appeals process interferes with his ability to take responsibility for his crime, but if he truly believes he's innocent, he shouldn't be taking the course anyway - he'll just have a treatment failure added to his risk assessment at the end of his sentence, and that can nudge him up on that risk level.
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