Multiple Illnesses Justify Civil Confinement in NY

     (CN) — Three convicted rapists must face civil confinement after prison because their mental conditions behind their sexual abuses compound their antisocial personality disorders, New York highest court ruled.
     The 46-page ruling Tuesday includes horrid details of the defendants’ crimes, with lurid details of dildos, hammers, and repeated the rapes of young girls and boys.
     Yet the last names of the defendants — Dennis K., Anthony N. and Richard TT — remain obscured.
     Trial courts deemed the men dangerous sex offenders requiring confinement, but the defendants challenged these findings on 2014 precedent that says “evidence that a respondent suffers from antisocial personality disorder cannot be used to support a finding that he [or she] has a mental abnormality as defined.”
     The Court of Appeals distinguished that precedent from the cases at hand, however, since the state’s Mental Hygiene Law specifies that the diagnosis must by accompanied by any other diagnoses of mental abnormality.
     Unlike the offender in the precedent, the three defendants here have all been diagnosed with other mental conditions, compounding their antisocial personality disorder.
     The decision out of Albany reads like a horror novel of sexual abuse against children and women.
     One of the appellants, Dennis K, raped several young women, beginning in 1975. At the age of 15, he and three fellow gang members gang-raped a 19-year-old woman. He then raped a 25-year-old woman.
     After serving his term in prison, Dennis K. raped another woman twice, landing him another conviction. Once released on parole in 1992 for that offense, he raped a 17-year-old pregnant woman in a park at gunpoint.
     During a hearing in 2011 to examine whether Dennis K. suffered with a mental abnormality, criminologists noted that he referred to himself during interviews as a “sadistical power rapist.”
     The second respondent, Anthony N., began his crime spree in 1983 when he was 27 by raping his girlfriend, during which he grabbed her by the hair and hit her in the eye.
     He did a year for assault. When he got out, he went to the woman’s house, pushed his way through the door and fondled her breasts. He got another six months for that.
     Once out, he again burst through the woman’s door, told her he had to “have [her] one more time” and raped her. That led him to another 18 months in prison.
     He then met a new woman and broke into her house in 2003 after learning she was seeing another man. Swinging a hammer, Anthony threatened to rape and kill her, then kill himself.
     That landed him in prison for a seven-year sentence.
     In June of 2010, just before he was to be released from prison, the state began a case against him to assert that he had “borderline personality disorder.”
     A hearing was held, and the state’s Supreme Court found that there was “probable cause to believe” that he was a “detained sex offender requiring civil management.”
     During his trial, a state-summonsed doctor testified that he felt “entitled” to sex.
     “This entitlement on respondent’s part demonstrates that he does not appreciate the rights of other people and that he has a poor ability to control his behavior,” according to the lead opinion Tuesday by Judge Eugene Pigott.
     Another clinical psychologist called to the stand during trial noted that Anthony had been arrested 46 times, three of them involving sex crimes against the same victims he had raped.
     The man argued at trial that the state failed to prove that the attempted burglary conviction constituted a sexually motivated offense, but the lower court denied his motion. A jury then found that his attempted burglary conviction was sexually motivated.
     The Supreme Court then held a dispositional hearing in April 2012, and eventually determined that he should be released.
     He says the testimony against him by his psychologist was tantamount to hearsay and not admissible. But because that objection was never previously raised, the high court rejected his claim.
     The fact that the man showed up at the woman’s house with a “sex toy” and “lubricant,” and told the woman he was going to rape her, dragged her to a bedroom and forced her to take off her clothes, get face down on the bad and proceeded to have sex with her equals rape. He only stopped when the woman’s son came home, the judge noted.
     The third appellant, Richard TT, started his raping spree in 1992 at the age of 12 when he first sodomized a 5-year-old girl and an 8-year-old boy. While in juvenile hall, he admitted to having sex with his sister and two of her friends, a stepsister and two cousins.
     He then raped a 15-year-old girl behind a YMCA building during a “teen night,” then threatened to kill her if she told.
     He got up to three years in prison for the latest offense.
     During trial, it was revealed that he suffered from depression, threatened suicide at the age of 13 and became a “cutter” at the age of 11.
     All told, he raped at least 10 people by the age of 19 — mostly family members. He “exhibits cognitive distortions that demonstrate he has serious difficulty controlling his sex-offending behavior, particularly concerning his understanding about what constitutes consensual sex,” the judge wrote.
     Richard had actually persuaded the trial court to vacate his civil commitment orders, but a lower appeals court reversed.
     Pigott notes that the initial vacate judgment misinterpreted the precedent.

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