New Legislation for Sexually Violent Persons

By WSAU News

UNDATED (WSAU) -- State Representative Katrina Shankland introduced new legislation Monday involving the placement of sexually violent persons, or SVPs, after they're finished with their prison sentence.

Much of the legislation is related to what took place with two SVPs being placed in the Town of Alban. Shankland says she's hopeful that if the out of county judges knew what the Portage County judge had said on the issue, they would've ruled differently.

She said, "Most people agree that not only should (SVPs) be placed in the county that they committed the crime, but also that an out of county judge should not be allowed to make these decisions. And should the out of county judges actually have had the correct information about the Portage County judge's decision, I would hope they wouldn't have done what they did."

Shankland says she wants to make sure that local voices are heard in the future when it comes to SVPs.

"So this is really about ensuring that the local control and the voices of local people heard and are respected. But, also about ensuring that our of county judges, and any judge for that matter, has been equipped with enough information to make an appropriate decision," said Shankland.

The legislation will require the Department of Health Services to compile a report regarding the different placement opportunities for SVPs and present that to local law enforcement and district attorneys where they might be placed. And then those individuals can meet with the department to try and figure out the best course of action when it comes to placing the SVP.