openDemocracyUK

The sex offenders’ register must stay

Paedophiles should not be allowed to melt into society undetected
18 February 2012

I am a prisoner, serving life for killing a suspected paedophile. As a child I suffered repeated and horrific abuse by adults. I don't for one minute believe that excuses my crime. Since October 2011 my partner Lydia Smith has written three articles about my situation. The first  looked at the diagnosis of Dangerous and Severe Personality Disorder, which has been applied to me. Then Lydia wrote about failings in mental health care in prison, based on my experience. After her latest article, which argued for longer sentences for paedophiles that properly reflect the terrible damage they do, Lydia came in for some hostile comment from “cantloginas_Momo” who called the sex offenders register “the modern equivalent for pillories” that should be killed off by the European Court of Human Rights. Here are some thoughts of my own.

The suggestion to do away with the sex offenders register is dangerous and scary.  Are you actually saying that you want all sex offenders to be anonymous, that you don't want them monitored, and that you are OK with them being free to hunt the streets for victims, trawling the internet pretending to be children and grooming them, going underground and forming paedo rings?

Are you saying they should be allowed to melt into society undetected and continue their offending inside and outside the family?

If the sex offenders register was abolished how would you monitor these people?  Do you not think that the authorities have a right to know where these people are?  These people gave up their entitlement to human rights the moment they committed inhuman acts of evil on unsuspecting vulnerable children.

The notion that sex offenders may have had a traumatic childhood does not make sense to me. Why would someone who has been the victim of such evil and suffered so intensely then go on to make other children suffer in the same way?

During my period of incarceration I have had to engage in group therapy, I have had to sit and listen while sex offenders attempt to justify their actions. They do everything they can to deflect blame, even blaming their victims for being dressed in a provocative way or saying that they were willing. In what universe would a child be blamed for seducing an adult?

These people very rarely accept responsibility for their actions because they won't accept that they have done anything wrong. I wouldn't want them free to babysit my children, what about you?

Only the really high-profile cases ever get a ‘whole life tariff’, which means exactly what it says, ‘whole life’.  In general the justice system takes pity on them and hands out relatively short sentences or just community sentences, if that. There really needs to be a change of sentence guidelines.

I killed someone and I am being punished according to the law with a mandatory life sentence.  I can and do accept this. I have never appealed my sentence. Neither I nor my partner will ever try to justify what I have done. I was also given a life sentence from the evil demonic beasts who planned and executed the horrific sexual abuse upon me. I have lost count of the times I have self-harmed and tried to end my life, oh how I wish that they had killed me. In my mind to make a child endure thirty, forty, fifty years of suffering, isolation, depression, anger and hate is worse than the same child being murdered at the time of the abuse.

In the comments section my partner has been asked how she can sleep at night. She hasn’t committed any crime. I have. I killed a man who was a suspected paedophile, he became a manifestation of the abusers from my childhood and in a detached and delusional state I killed him. I could of course say how sorry I am or how guilty I feel but that would not be the truth. It is a trait of the disorder that I don't feel that it was me who did this. In my detached state I had no connection to reality, I was cold, emotionless and dangerous.  All I saw was my abuser. Due to the sexual abuse I suffered I had developed a dissociative psychopathic personality disorder.

The point my partner is trying to raise is that I have not been given appropriate treatment. I have had numerous comprehensive psychiatric and psychological reports that all agree with the diagnosis and all agree that my disorder is treatable. And yet here I am, in a restrictive special unit just being contained.

"David" and "Lydia Smith" are pseudonyms 

Stop the secrecy: Publish the NHS COVID data deals


To: Matt Hancock, Secretary of State for Health and Social Care

We’re calling on you to immediately release details of the secret NHS data deals struck with private companies, to deliver the NHS COVID-19 datastore.

We, the public, deserve to know exactly how our personal information has been traded in this ‘unprecedented’ deal with US tech giants like Google, and firms linked to Donald Trump (Palantir) and Vote Leave (Faculty AI).

The COVID-19 datastore will hold private, personal information about every single one of us who relies on the NHS. We don’t want our personal data falling into the wrong hands.

And we don’t want private companies – many with poor reputations for protecting privacy – using it for their own commercial purposes, or to undermine the NHS.

The datastore could be an important tool in tackling the pandemic. But for it to be a success, the public has to be able to trust it.

Today, we urgently call on you to publish all the data-sharing agreements, data-impact assessments, and details of how the private companies stand to profit from their involvement.

The NHS is a precious public institution. Any involvement from private companies should be open to public scrutiny and debate. We need more transparency during this pandemic – not less.


By adding my name to this campaign, I authorise openDemocracy and Foxglove to keep me updated about their important work.

Who is bankrolling Britain's democracy? Which groups shape the stories we see in the press; which voices are silenced, and why? Sign up here to find out.

Comments

We encourage anyone to comment, please consult the oD commenting guidelines if you have any questions.
Audio available Bookmark Check Language Close Comments Download Facebook Link Email Newsletter Newsletter Play Print Share Twitter Youtube Search Instagram WhatsApp yourData