NY Daily News | By Emily Horowitz
Last week, Anthony Weiner was released from federal prison to a Bronx halfway house after serving 21 months for sending sexually-explicit messages to a 15-year-old girl. Next, like approximately 4.5 million others on probation/parole, he’ll spend 3 years on supervised release.
Supervised release is no cakewalk; while on it, one is subject to unannounced visits and random searches, needs approval for travel and housing, and must regularly report to probation (in New York, reporting can take hours, resulting in missed work). Each year, more than 600,000 people leave prison and face a web of re-entry challenges — first probation/parole, which often act like a “tripwire” by creating barriers rather than supports for re-entry, with infractions like late curfews, moving violations, or missed phone calls from officers resulting in penalties or more prison. In Weiner’s case, he’ll also pay a $10,000 fine.
Most significantly, Weiner is also now about to become one of the more than 900,000 Americans on sex offense registries for the rest of his life (only Level 1 offenders in New York are removed after 20 years). We’ve spent decades now adding people to these lists without thinking hard about whether the ostracism it engineers is effective or humane.
So what will this mean for Weiner, and for us?