North Country assemblyman wants violent offenders to register
Thursday, May 22, 2014 - 6:28 am

Republican assemblyman Marc W. Butler wants to establish a violent felony offender registry.

The bill known as Brittany’s Law has already passed the Senate.

“The line is clearly drawn on our responsibility as legislators to protect New Yorkers from known violent criminals – passing Brittany’s Law will provide law enforcement and citizens with a new resource to promote public safety,” Butler, who represents Madrid, Stockholm, Norfolk, Parishville, Pierrepont, Clare, Colton Clifton and Fine, said. “Studies show that violent criminals are more likely to become repeat offenders. A registry will help keep citizens aware of those who have violent pasts. We owe this to Brittany Passalacgua’s family and other victims of violent crimes.”

Brittany Passalacgua and her mother, Helen Buchel, were murder victims of John Edward Brown, a man with a long history of violence and assault, including a violent attack on his infant daughter. Buchel was not aware of Brown’s violent history. Butler feels that implementing a registry of violent offenders would help people guard themselves and limit their exposure to violent criminals.

The bill would require convicted violent felons to register with the New York State Department of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS) upon discharge, parole or release from any state or local facility including hospitals and mental health institutions.

The public would be able to access this registry in a similar fashion to the sex offender registry.

Butler also noted that the legislation would help law enforcement better monitor these criminals through an annual registration requirement.

Violent criminal registries are already in place in Montana, Illinois, Indiana, Florida, Kansas, Oklahoma, Louisiana and Nevada.