Assemblywoman Linda Greenstein (D-Middlesex/Mercer) had the following published in the Gannett New Jersey newspapers:
“t has been more than 15 years since New Jersey lawmakers enacted one of the country’s first laws creating a registry of sex offenders and notifying the community of their presence. Megan’s Law was written after the tragic murder of a Hamilton Township child — Megan Kanka — by a released sex offender who lived across the street. With strong community support, our Legislature and governor created a system whereby residents would be made aware if a convicted sex offender lived in their neighborhood. Armed with this information, parents could keep a closer watch over their children.
“I believe that the public has a right to know that a sex offender is living in the community so parents can take precautionary measures. Registration and notification laws are fair because they are not intended to be punitive. Protecting children from sex offenders is a primary government interest. Registration can be used as a law enforcement tool to track possible offenders and to identify or eliminate suspects. There is a deterrent effect to an offender who knows he is being monitored, and victims express a sense of security when they know their abuser is being monitored….”
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