Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Pedophile In My Neighbourhood

I get the Niagara Falls Review delivered daily not because it is an excellent newspaper, but because I like to keep abreast of local events.  Most of the news I read is online as the stories in the review are usually a few days old.  This morning over my habitual green tea I came across a story that not only had me enraged, it terrified me. It seems a convicted pedophile, Robert Lee Sowell has moved into my neighbourhood while he is awaiting sentencing.

Sowell is convicted of molesting three boys, and one for more than two years.  He is not due to face sentencing until December 8, in a St.Catherines court. There are currently seven children residing in the building in which he is staying.  There are also two schools, and two parks within a 30 minute walking distance.  The closest park is less than 5 minutes away. 

It seems that the crown attorney was under the impression that no children were living in the building at which he currently resides when she agreed to his placement there.  Even if that was the case, which it is not, residents have a right to be informed that there is a pedophile living in our neighbourhood.  We only found out from reading a report in the newspaper.  This is a neighbourhood that is full of children.  Our parks are often crowded, and filled with the sounds of laughter on beautiful summer days.

Now that this man is free, the park that used to be filled with smiling faces is empty, and children are either inside, or have been driven to parks that are further away to avoid the danger of this man.  Sowell is not a man that is awaiting trial, he is a man that has admitted to child abuse, how is it fair that he is free and our children our trapped in their homes in fear?  One child was reported in the Review to be scared to walk his dog because Sowell was sitting on the front steps of the apartment building.

Police cautioned residents not to take actions into our own hands. They encourage people to continue to monitor his behaviour. For me this is difficult to do because unfortunately the newspaper did not print a picture of this man, and so I have no idea what he looks like.  It seems to me that no one would be in this predicament if Sowell was in jail where he belongs.  He is a threat to every single child in this neighbourhood. 

Pedophilia is an urge that these monsters cannot control.  When a child is sexually assaulted it stays with them for life.  We are needlessly risking the safety of our children. I know that it sounds like I am advocating not in my backyard, but I am advocating not in any backyard.  Until this man is placed in jail where he belongs, the freedom that my son "Destruction" knew is gone. I will not risk anything happening to him.  Even though I reviewed good touch/bad touch with him and not talking to strangers, I no longer feel safe allowing him to go to the local convenience store to blow his allowance, or  play tag or basketball for hours like he used to.  Until this man is away his freedom will extend no further than my front yard.  My child is everything  to me,  and though this is a cruelty I do not wish to impose, his safety comes first.  If only the  criminal justice system chose to value the safety of children over a convicted criminal.


Yobachi said...

I'm the type of person that would harrass a pedophile out of my neighborhood.

I don't care what nobody says about "well, where are they going to live". They can go live under the prison where they belong. Hell if I care.

Anonymous said...

In my previous neighborhood I would ocasionally get notification of a pedophile moving into the area. It struck me as very peculiar because there was an elementary school right behind my building. Sometimes the pedos would even live on the same street as the school! I'm still puzzled by that.

Barbara B.

Danny said...

I agree with a person not wanting a pedophile in a neighboorhood with children but I do think that the issue of "well where are they gonna live" is one that needs to be addressed. I can understand why you wouldn't care yobachi but these criminals can't just be allowed to drop off the radar.

A few months ago I saw a story about a groups of sex offenders that were living under a bridge. Yes under a bridge. That means that these offenders had been reduced to the status of homeless vagrants. That is very dangerous because homeless vagrant types tend to drop off the radar. And dropping out of sight is one of the greatest gifts any criminal can receive.

Renee said...

The point in this case is that this man has already admitted his guilt and is awaiting sentencing. I see no reason to allow a man that is clearly a threat to society to be out awaiting sentencing. There are some crimes that people should be required to be locked up for immediately. He either needs to go to a half way house on 24 hour lock down or prison. He has already done enough damage.

Becky C. said...

First my credentials--I was a prosecutor who specialized in child abuse, sex crimes and domestic violence. In fact, I went into law inorder to castrate and lop the heads of these monsters. So they find no sympathy here.

But, we are also becoming Fear Nation. I don't know the specifics of this case--but the overwhelming majority of child sex abuse are within the family or a trusted adult--like the soccer coach. The boogeyman jumping out of the bushes and grabbing kids is very rare--that is why it gets so much attention when it happens.

I suspecct that this creep has the usual modus operandi. I am not saying don't be concerned--but people should not freak out.

Rather than worry so much about registered sex offenders it would be more productive if we started looking in families for the unconvicted ones (they dwarf the number of registered offenders), teach kids to report this stuff, increase the staff of sex abuse counselors, make it less traumatic for these things to be prosecuted, etc.


Larry Geater said...

The pedophile you know about is not the one you need to be afraid of. There were pedophiles in your area before this guy moved in and they will be there after he leaves. Fore warned is fore armed. The person you need to fear is the person that is trusted to be alone with children. You clergy or coach. In the words of John Goodman, "If you're hungry go to Sizler. If you want peopleto trust yu with children you can molest go to seminary."

Drowsey Monkey said...

The sad thing is they're everywhere, scary I know. At least the police released the info ... I'm sure they'd rather lock him up. The justice system just isn't equipped to handle these people ... and that needs to be changed.


This is so random but...heyyy you live in Niagra Falls. I never caught that. I am going to Buffalo New York tomorrow...and Niagra Falls. Cool Beans.


I remember a sex offender moved in my neighborhood and I felt uncomfortable. But we also have to keep in mind that some sex offenders are 19 year old boys who have had sex with 17 year old girls or 18 year old boys that flashed someone for a joke and now there 40 and still registered as a sex offender.

The sex offender that you are discussing here abused a child and the solution is:

there isnt one...

Even though the most repetitive offender is a pedophile, because of their rights, there is nothing that we could really "do with them" unless we made stricter laws against how long they stayed in jail and so on and so fourth. I believe what these men do is horrible but I also believe they are human beings. We can't just go ahead and push em to the side.

I think that this is one issue that is sooooo complex. We HAVE to save our children, but we HAVE to give people minimal rights. Its what "America" is about.

I think we really need to crack down on internet kiddie porn which I learned is a million dollar industry. Seriously. I think that this teenage porn needs to be cracked down on as well. Does no one find it creepy that there is so much "Barely Legal" shit out there! And that's only because of the law. A title can't say underage because then the people can be charged but let's think about what this means in our society. It's apparently acceptable if your a 40 year old man to watch porn with "Barely Legal" girls in it...

My point is that, our society has a lot to do with why there are so many pedophiles that exist and why there is so much shit on the internet. What will we do?

Disclaimer: Its....1:45 in the morning. lol.

Anonymous said...

I understand your fear and anger, but consider that as long as this man (presumably) is being put through the court system, he is surely receiving training, counseling, and probably also drugs to counteract his sexual urges. And now that his address is public, he has a community of people watching his every move, which will certainly reduce his chances of molesting again and create pressure on him to continue to fight the battle against his darker side. Like the other commenters here, I worry more about the still-anonymous sex offenders who have not yet been reported.

Scott said...

In today's Niagara Falls Review they are saying that he has moved out of the apartment in question. He was seen loading bags into a car.

Earlier the same day the police reassured everyone that Sowell would be out of the apartment that same day. Its not known at this time where he has moved to!!

Anonymous said...

I agree! But why stop at just pedophiles? There was this Hispanic guy down the street and he was out on bail for killing a person! A person! Not only where kids at risk but so was everyone else. I know I would feel so much safer knowing all the people around me who ever were or are currently being convicted of a crime. That way I know we can stigmatize them and send them somewhere else! And we should make laws saying they can't live near us! Keep those scummy criminals away.