Iowa Bills Could Add Treatment Time For Inmates

It's an unforgettable Iowa case, registered sex offender Michael Klunder kidnapped two girls, one got away but the other, Kathlynn Shepard, was brutally murdered. Klunder then took his own life.

Cases like this prompt the question, what can be done if an inmate serves their sentence, yet it's still felt they pose a threat to public safety?

Bill SF 2296 in Iowa now allows the Department of Corrections director to keep any convict in custody until it's determined that a treatment plan has fully restored their competence.

The Women's Center for Advancement CEO Amy Richardson said it's a very progressive law. "I think it is extremely valuable. I think it is a safety issue because that they have been incarcerated doesn't mean they have been treated."

This bill will extend to a variety of dangerous criminals. "For a state to be able to take another step forward and we don't believe they have maximized their treatment, we don't think they have been treated or they weren't willing to participate, you have to do something," said Richardson.

A second bill signed, SF 2211, specifically targets sexually violent predators. Courts will now have greater access to juvenile records, and can take previous convictions into account when deciding on a sentence.

The same law requires a release plan for sexually violent predators 60 days before their release. That includes things like counseling and medication.

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