Archive for Thursday, January 19, 2012

Prosecutors want sex crime convict to remain in state custody

January 19, 2012


A Douglas County jury Wednesday began hearing evidence in the case of a 42-year-old man convicted of sex crimes whom prosecutors aim to keep in state custody instead of released on parole.

Dr. Janet Kohrs, a psychologist who contracts with the Kansas Department of Corrections, testified Wednesday afternoon that Kodi A. Thomas had received about 130 disciplinary reports, including one that said he had plans to sexually assault several female staff members in 1999.

He was incarcerated in 1996 after he was convicted of attempted rape and aggravated burglary in Douglas County.

Douglas County District Attorney Charles Branson and Amy McGowan, a chief assistant district attorney, are asking jurors to find that Thomas is a “sexually violent predator” and too dangerous to be released from state custody. They are asking he remain in state custody for treatment.

The trial will resume at 9 a.m. today.


Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 4 months ago

"They are asking he remain in state custody for treatment."

Yeah right. The recidivism rate for criminals with those types of problems is just about 100%.

The only real cure is incarceration.

Steve Jacob 6 years, 4 months ago

Always been uncomfortable about locking people up after there sentence has expired. Why do we assume anyone being released from prison will not commit crimes again?

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 4 months ago

I think that you did not intend to insert "not" in your second statement. I am going to assume that is the case for my comments to follow.

It might sound unfair, but note in the article above: "he had plans to sexually assault several female staff members in 1999."

Apparently he was never put on trial for that, and therefore no sentence was imposed for it. If that statement is true, it should be a red flag indicating that Mr. Thomas is likely to commit crimes again.

And as I noted above, the recidivism rate for this type of criminal is very high. Meaning, that if he were to be released, the chances he is going to be back in prison very soon are overwhelming. But in the meantime, there will be at least a few more victims of "attempted rape and aggravated burglary."

It is true that this is very unfortunate.

But it is also true that if Mr. Thomas had been a model prisoner and demonstrated remorse for his actions, things would very likely be different. Instead of that, he "received about 130 disciplinary reports."

In situations such as this, the evidence that we have obtained from hundreds of years of observation of this type of criminal indicates that he will simply return to a life of crime.

But there is another factor. And that is our society's attitude towards persons who have been incarcerated. It is difficult for an ex-felon to obtain a job, or even a place to live. And only the most basic of the social safety net programs are available for them. So it is very difficult to not return to a life of crime, just to eat.

But I don't think that is a major factor in the case of Mr. Thomas. There are some individuals who simply have a psychiatric tendency towards criminal behavior. To varying degrees, they exhibit sociopathic and psychopathic tendencies. There is not a fine line between normal and a person that can be definitively diagnosed as falling into either of those categories.

And note: Mr. Thomas is not necessarily going to be in prison. "In state custody" might mean that he will be in a psychiatric institution. And yet another point is that funding for such institutions has been cut as of recent years, which is unfortunate.

The only reasonable conclusion that can be reached in a case such as this is that he should not be released and be free to roam the streets, for the safety of all of us.

verity 6 years, 4 months ago

Ron is exactly right. While I believe we should do all we can to rehabilitate people, for some reason it is rarely successful with sexual predators. Often this kind of thing seems to escalate and the next woman assaulted could end up dead.

littlexav 6 years, 4 months ago

he is still serving his sentence. parole is an early-out, and he clearly doesn't deserve it.

ebyrdstarr 6 years, 4 months ago

I think the use of the word parole in this article is incorrect. He was convicted in 1996, so he was sentenced under the guidelines, meaning there is no parole. The state is taking him to trial to try to prove that he is a sexually violent predator who should be civilly committed to Larned State Hospital.

rtwngr 6 years, 4 months ago

This man cannot be trusted. I don't want him wandering around unsupervised.

Ken Lewis 6 years, 4 months ago

The problem is the State has already done too much lock'em and hold'em. The sexual predator program is way over budget. If you want to hold more poeple, get out your checkbooks and start paying more taxes. That is going to get increasingly tough with Boeing leaving and all those high paid jobs not paying taxes in KS anymore.

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 4 months ago

If the persons who are in prison for victimless crimes were to be released, there would be plenty of room for the sexual predators.

Think about that the next time your daughter is out late at night.

kawrivercrow 6 years, 4 months ago

I, for one, will cheerfully write a check if it is specifically earmarked to keep sex pedators locked up for life. I will not, however, pay for any food beyond bread and water or any medical care.

oldvet 6 years, 4 months ago

For a “sexually violent predator”... yeah, that works.

Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 4 months ago

I would not go so far as to suggest that for all cases. There are varying degrees of sex crimes.

What is needed is a method of keeping the public safe.

unite2revolt 6 years, 4 months ago

I'm not the same person I was in 1999. I'd be more curious about what his behavior in the last three years or so has been. If those 130 infractions were all 10+ years ago, they don't hold much weight in my book.

kawrivercrow 6 years, 4 months ago

You've got to be kidding? Are you just playing the role of PC liberal or do you honestly believe what you've written?

jcoozy1978 6 years, 4 months ago

Google Kansas offender search and search the name. Kodi Thomas. It will give you 130 reasons why he should be back in prison. This guy knows nothing except how to get in trouble. He's a very dangerous person. Mark my word he is for sure a repeat offender... he is sick in the head. I feel nobody can feel 100 percent safe with this guy roaming all over town.

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