BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — The WIAT 42 News Investigative Team started this assignment by typing up words to make a request these recipients probably never expected: What advice would you give parents to protect their children from people like you: Convicted sex offenders?
In most cases the letters went unanswered — even from those who pleaded guilty to their crimes. But WIAT 42 did receive some letters from those convicted of heinous crimes: rape, incest, murder and assault.
“[An unnamed inmate] got this letter that I sent to his cell mate and decided he would answer it instead,” one inmate said.
He says he’s in prison for a murder he claims he did not commit. He also says WIAT 42 should consider in sending out these letters, that some of the people in prison for these crimes did not actually commit them.
WIAT 42 has posted the letters here for you to read.
Out of respect for the victims in each case WIAT42 has removed names, prison information, or any details that could identify victims.
The advice they gave was often in line with child advocates have to say about protecting your children.
WIAT 42 also interviewed a registered sex offender who didn’t mind having his identity revealed. However, WIAT 42 has chosen not to reveal his identity.
It’s been 11 years since his release from an Alabama prison, and though he initially said he was reluctant to give advice to parents, he, too, opened up about what things we can do as a society to protect our children from sex offenders.
A lot of the people who have committed these crimes over the years, these are the people. I hear it all the time. ‘This is the last person I would suspect of doing this type of thing.’ You’re looking for a nameless, faceless, monster on a list, when you are not looking at the people who are far more likely to do these types of offenses,” he told WIAT 42.
This registered sex offender was 25 years old when he was convicted of child sex abuse. His victim was 11 years old.
“I don’t talk too much about the offense. I will say it involved an extended family member and years ago I made as much reparations as I possibly can,” he added.
He told WIAT 42 repeatedly this is not who he is today, although he will forever be registered as that guy on the Alabama Department of Public Safety website.
He says when he was in prison he participated in a group called Sex Offenders Anonymous, a prison-based inmate run program.
“A lot of the people I knew who were sex offenders were going to the programming,” he said.
But he says a lot of them were not.
Below is a list of tips given to us by people WIAT 42 wrote to:
- “Cameras should be in every day care, school, etc,“
- “The biggest secret is how many female abusers there are and the denial of society”
- “I am not a pedophile. They are the percent of those to worry about, the ones that there is no rehab to date.”
- “So, tell parents to first look long and hard at their own spouses and relatives.”
- “No one ever thinks the females would do anything to little boys, either.”
- “Kids coming from baby momma to the next ‘daddy’ to the next ‘boyfriend’, live in people, etc.
- “The hidden truth of sex trafficking”
- “Give stats on how many ’kids’ are abducted by the sex trade, and then cmpare the molestations, proven to have happened, and you’ll then have “the story!”
- “No matter what we do to protect our children sometimes these awful acts will happen because of the trust we have for those that do them.”
Childcare Resources: http://www.ccr-bhm.org/
Alabama’s children’s advocacy centers: http://www.adph.org/ALPHTN/assets/062911AlabamaCACs.pdf
Blount County Children’s Center: http://www.blountcountychildrenscenter.com/
The Children’s Place in St. Clair County: http://stclairchildren.wordpress.com/
Oasis Counseling for Women and Children: http://www.oasiscounseling.org/
Copyright 2014 WIAT 42 News