Over in New York State, Rensselaer County legislators have decided Vermont needs tougher sex offender laws.
You can read about it HERE
The gist is a couple of county legislators started on this topic in response to the Brooke Bennett case, then were fueled by a Vermont man being arrested there for allegedly impersonating a police officer as he tried to abduct two young girls.
Imagine how well this went over with Dick Sears, the senator from Bennington who oversees the Senate Judiciary Committee. He mentioned that he has a few items he'd like to see New York lawmakers tackle of their own. If you have been to Rensselaer County, home of Troy, you have to concede that he has a point.
Moving beyond that, however, perhaps a neighboring state has a right to pay attention to our laws and how they affect them. If we were to drop our drinking age to 18, the Empire State might have some issues with that, for instance.
What we don't know is exactly how things would be different under New York laws/procedures in a case like Michael Jacques, or even whether this latest case is the work of a convicted sex offender. Those seem to be key questions the legislators should consider before telling people in another state how things should be done.
Otherwise, we'd be tempted to explore how many criminals just Rensselaer County has exported to Vermont vs. how many Vermont has exported to Rensselaer County.
- Terri Hallenbeck