Friday, November 26, 2010

No one will be released from MN-MSOP in 2010

I haven't gotten anything new from Chris to post as of late, so I thought I'd share the latest bad news. It was recently reported the Minnesota Civil Commitment Centers will not be releasing anyone this year after it was reported earlier this year they planned on releasing some civilly committed individuals. It is all a game to this program.

Minnesota Sex Offender Program: "No Men Will Be Released in 2010"

By KBJR Manager

Minnesota Sex Offender Program: "No Men Will Be Released in 2010"
November 22, 2010 Duluth, MN (Northland's NewsCenter) - In a follow up to our report on the Minnesota Sex Offender Program spokespeople say no men will be released in 2010. Sex offenders who will be released must go before a court appointed panel after they've successfully completed treatment and because the court has not begun the process to release any men at this point no releases will be made before the end of the year. Spokespeople say the final stage before any release is to transfer offenders to the facility in St. Peter. No one has been transferred in preparation for release at this point. There are currently 587 sex offenders in the program and in the 15 years of Minnesota's Civil Commitment program no one has been successfully released.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Lots of Moose Lake News lately

A lot of Moose Lake articles lately. First up, Elliot Holley win a $450k settlement against the Moose Lake Civil Commitment Center:

 Then there is a follow-up to an earlier report on Moose Lake' plans to release as many as nine civilly committed citizens a year:

 Still no word on whether or not any of this has will impact Chris.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Krych's four conditions of confinement concerns 08/12/2010

Here is another letter from Mr. Krych. It seems that much like prison, he is reporting harassment from certain guard for his writ writing. Apparently he got in a little trouble for calling a guard a "retard." Apparently from what he wrote in his letter, he's had problems with this particular guard in the past.

The notarized letter is a list of grievances he has with the conditions of confinement:

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Chris's Letter "Therapeutical 'Tax Dollars' Hard At Work

Below is another letter Chris asked me to post on his behalf. This time, it is written in his own handwriting rather than by type this time. In reading this letter, it is hard to believe he is in a civil commitment center; it sounds more like a prison. As always, click on the page to read the entire page:

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Thanks for the donation, Chris!

I know he cannot see it, but I want to thank him for sending me $20 in support of my efforts. I was thinking about that today when I wrote an article on my other blog about how so many people affected by these laws are apathetic to the cause. Chris shared with me he has given what he could in support of programs he feels benefits society. Enclosed in his letter was three such programs: the National Death Row Assistance Network of CURE, the Coalition for Prisoners' Rights, and the Judicial Process Commission, who all offered thank you letters.

Chris said, "I'm not poor but I am a generous person." Like me, he bartered items for stamps to send such donations. I think we forget how valuable that is sometimes.

As an added bonus, here is an article on another center for sex offenders in MN:

Tracking Your Money: State Nursing Home for Sex Offenders Sits Empty for Year

Updated: 07/14/2010 10:41 PM By: Katie Lynn

State Nursing Home for Sex Offenders Sits Empty for YearThe state of Minnesota spent nearly $10 million taxpayer dollars to build a nursing home for convicted sex offenders a state of the art, secured facility, but there's one very big problem; The new nursing home for committed sex offenders in St. Peter has sat unused for a year, because the building hasn't passed state inspection.

The building was finished last July and a ribbon cutting was held in October, but final inspections of the building hadn't taken place.

Nearly nine months later, the needed repairs still haven't been done. A hallway is too narrow, handrails and faucets are set at the wrong height and a fire alarm system locks doors instead of opening them in the event of a fire, says inspection reports. Dozens of other problems are listed in the inspections.

Meanwhile, taxpayers have had to heat and cool the empty building for a year, costing more than $5,000.

The 15 sex offenders who were supposed to be moved to the new facility are being housed in another building on the St. Peter campus. Eventually, the state says the 48-bed facility will be filled to capacity.

Our 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS Investigation has caught the attention of lawmakers. As a result, the St. Peter Project will be front and center at a legislative hearing later this summer.

Monday, June 21, 2010

MN SOs inch closer to freedom

I haven't heard from Chris in a while but I saw this article from Minnesota Public Radio online and since it is relevant to his situation, I decided to post it here.

Minn. sex offenders inch closer to freedom

by Martiga Lohn, Associated Press
June 21, 2010

St. Paul, Minn. (AP) — State courts have sent more than 560 high-risk sexual predators to the Minnesota Sex Offender Program for indefinite treatment since 1995. The only person ever released was later pulled back inside for a violation and died there.
Now program officials are laying the groundwork for letting someone out, with intensive monitoring.
Since early 2008, with the approval of a judicial panel, five sex offenders have been moved outside the razor-wire fence at a state facility in St. Peter, about 70 miles southwest of Minneapolis. They have privileges such as escorted trips off campus and cooking their own food in the Community Preparation Service program, the last stop before a provisional discharge.
The offenders can ask for more freedom by petitioning the Minnesota Supreme Court for a provisional discharge. Similar petitions are routinely denied for offenders who haven't advanced as far in treatment.
It will be up to a three-judge panel appointed by the Minnesota Supreme Court to determine if one of the civilly committed sex offenders in Community Preparation Service takes that next step. Also weighing in will be a special review board that looks at the offender's progress in treatment and assesses his ability to re-enter society successfully.
Releasing a sex offender, even one found to have succeeded in treatment, won't go down easy with the public.
But experts said a release could help the sex offender program by showing that it exists to treat sex offenders, not detain them indefinitely. Consultants who evaluated Minnesota's program last year said the lack of releases goes against the program's intent and hurts the morale of patients and staff.
"If you have people flowing through your treatment and some of them being released, then that makes the whole process seem more credible," said Dr. David Thornton, treatment director for Wisconsin's sexual predator treatment program, which has released or discharged more than 60 sex offenders since 1995.
Provisional discharge wouldn't mean unfettered movement for a sex offender.
Dennis Benson, who heads the Minnesota Sex Offender Program, said a provisional discharge will come with daily supervision by an agent, geographic tracking, polygraph tests and outpatient treatment requirements. Any violations would send the sex offender back into confinement. Local law enforcement officials would be kept in the loop. The surrounding community would be informed if the person were to live anywhere other than a halfway house.
State officials wouldn't release details about the five sex offenders in the Community Preparation Service program, citing medical privacy laws.
(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

Thursday, April 22, 2010

MPR article on Moose Lake Camp

Interesting note: At the end, the officials at Moose Lake do not know when if if they'll ever release anyone!

At Moose Lake, a facility some say is more prison than therapy

by Rupa Shenoy, Minnesota Public Radio
April 22, 2010

Moose Lake, Minn. — Three fences topped with razor wire line the perimeter of the state sex offender facility.

Inside are two steel and concrete buildings that house more than 400 men who have completed sentences for sex crimes. The men are still behind bars because county judges found they were too dangerous to return to communities and placed them under civil commitment.

After weeks of debate, state lawmakers agreed in March to allot $45.7 million for an expansion of the Moose Lake facility that officials say is vital for treatment. It will allow the program to keep pace with Minnesota's growing population of people under civil commitment. Taxpayers will have to spend more in two years, and at regular intervals afterward, to stay at that pace.

As the expansion gets underway, advocates for the offenders are questioning the treatment program's true purpose -- and the conditions under which the patients are kept. The ACLU of Minnesota represents men at Moose Lake who allege it is more like a prison than a treatment center.

The Moose Lake facility houses more than 400 men who have completed sentences for sex crimes. Each man costs the state $328 a day.

Dennis Benson, director of the state's sex offender treatment program, said the men at Moose Lake are patients, not inmates. Each man spends between six and ten hours a week in therapy -- mostly group discussion sessions, he said.

"Treatment goes way beyond the two hours of group that they spend everyday," Benson said. "We're documenting how they interact when they go to their work portion of the day. We document if we see something in the visiting room. Clinical staff will tell you someone can do fine in a treatment room but can they carry that behavior over to the gym? That approach is very different to even a sex offender treatment program at a prison."

At Moose Lake, men walk through the halls in street clothes. A few stand in groups, talking quietly.

But County courts considered them too dangerous to put back in communities. Judges placed them under civil commitment, allowing the state to hold the men in treatment indefinitely.

Every patient has to take responsibility for their crimes. Therapists check if they're telling the truth with regular polygraph tests, Benson said.

But the state has no authority to force sex offenders into treatment. About 90 refuse to participate.

Among them is Wallace Beaulieu. He was in pre-treatment therapy at Moose Lake but stopped participating.

"Anybody can say they're providing treatment, but if you're never giving anybody the opportunity to be released, what's the treatment then?" asks Beaulieu, 38.

Beaulieu said he was convicted twice for a forced sexual encounter -- one of a woman, in 1990, and 1992, a teenage girl. He said he spent four years in prison and was released in 1996.

Beaulieu said he did not register as a sex offender and was sent back to prison. When he finished that sentence, a Cass County judge ruled he was still a danger to the community and civilly committed him.

Beaulieu complains that Moose Lake is designed not to release patients.

"The treatment program right now is so vague," Beaulieu said. "They don't really talk about any sex offender issues that a person should be addressing.

"You go sit in there and tell them what's on your mind and all they do is write stuff down."

Whether Beaulieu and others at Moose Lake are in treatment is key part of their lawsuit. The U.S. and Minnesota Supreme courts have ruled that civil commitment is legal, as long as those committed are in treatment.

"It is a question of whether or not these conditions are reasonably related to therapeutic goals. We argue they are not," said Teresa Nelson, legal counsel for the ACLU.

"Depending on what the court rules in our case, that will have an impact on whether or not the program is found constitutional."

Instead of treatment, Beaulieu spends most of his days reading books checked out from the library or watching TV.

"We spend a lot of time in our unit," he said. "There's not a lot of activities made available for us.

"Once you serve your prison sentence you'd think you be treated better than we are here," he said. "It's like being back in prison."

As an example, Beaulieu points to his room, which he calls a cell. He said it looks just like the ones he had while in prison.

Most cells in Moose Lake are shared by two men. There are either 68 or 98 cells in each living unit.

There's a living unit for patients under 20 and another for elderly or infirmed patients.

Patients are locked in their rooms from 9:45 at night to 6:25 in the morning. The cells are largely made of welded steel, with two windows about five inches wide and four feet high. Patients double bunk and share a single toilet. They have a writing surface.

"They can have what they can put in two foot lockers," Benson said. "They can have a TV. They pay for their cable charge. They pay for the TV too."

Outside the cell is a large two-tier open space with metal chairs, tables, a ping pong table, and a row of payphones. Showers are on each side.

"So this is kind of their life," Benson said. "So we have to occupy their time. You can see some of them put puzzles together, some of them play chess. This becomes their world."

The new money approved by the legislature will fund a 100,000-square-foot addition to the Moose Lake treatment facility. It will include a new dining area, additional treatment rooms, and security offices.

The improvements will allow Moose Lake keep pace with a growing population of sex offenders. Officials figure it will give them the room they need to provide treatment -- but just for two years.

Benson said about half of patients participated in treatment a few years ago, but today 90 percent do.

In part that is because patients can make progress by graduating to St. Peter, the state's other sex offender treatment facility, he said. It offers a new treatment stage that prepares patients for release.

"That's the final stage of treatment," Benson said. "We now have five people that the courts have placed in that program and that's brand new in the last two years. ... So I think that's given a lot of hope to these folks.

No one knows when or if someone in the treatment program will be released. Until that happens, the population of civilly committed people will only grow. And the cost to taxpayers will grow with it.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Is Double Bunking Constitutional?

Latest article by Mr. Krych, dated 3/14/10, entitled "Is double Bunking Constitutional?"

What will be MSOP's future direction?

Here is an article by Mr. Krych entitled "What will be MSOP's future direction?" As always, click on the article picture to read it.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Some people in civil commitment do not belong there

Here is another commentary by Mr. Krych, in his own words. As always, click on the picture to enlarge it.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Chris: letter to the editor, Star-Tribune

Below is a letter Mr. Krych wrote to the editor of the Star-Tribune. Click on the image below to read it in its entirety.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Gov. making "palace" for civilly committed

I hope Chris doesn't mind me posting this, since it is news on his camp. I'm sure he can give a different view of what is really happening.

But they're cutting way back on the project Gov. Tim Pawlenty wants most: a sex offender treatment facility. Some lawmakers say it is way too luxurious. In fact, they are calling it "Pawlenty's Palace" for sex offenders. The number of civilly committed sex offenders skyrocketed after ex-con Alfonso Rodriquez murdered college student Dru Sjodin. But lawmakers say the governor's proposing "a palace" to confine them. "It seems so unreal," said State Sen. Keith Langseth, DFL-Glyndon, who describes Pawlenty's proposed $89 million facility as "more than a Cadillac plan ... it's a Mercedes, maybe." Langseth, who's the chairman of the powerful Capitol Investments Committee which approves construction projects, calls the Moose Lake plans too excessive and too luxurious.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Civil commitment center might finally release some prisoners

I don't know if Chris will be one of those people, but under Constitutional and media scrutiny, it seems Minnesota may finally release some civilly committed individuals.

In the 14 years since the program opened a facility in Moose Lake to treat civilly committed sex offenders, none have been released.
This could change soon, as approximately six offenders are expected to be returned to their communities fairly soon, Scott County Human Services Director Tim Walsh told county commissioners last week. One may live in Scott County.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Please Help an American Citizen!

Below is a five page letter Mr. Krych wished to share with the American People. Below is an account of the trials of one civilly committed prisoner in his OWN words. Click on the page for a larger page.