An expert on sex offenders says efforts by local governments to restrict where they can live are misguided.
Several communities in Wisconsin have passed ordinances seriously restricting where sex offenders can live. Psychologist Dr. Anna Salter says such laws don't actually help, because they're based on the faulty premise the proximity to a victim will increase the chances of recidivism.
Salter, who works as a consultant for the State Department of Corrections, says those who re-offend rarely do it near where they live. She says residency restrictions can actually make it harder for offenders to recover because they have to travel further to access treatment, to work, or to see support groups.
A proposal at the Capitol would prevent local communities from creating their own restrictions, forcing them to go along with state rules. Salter supports the effort, saying the focus should be on how offenders find their victims.
The bill is being considered by a legislative committee.