Patrick Kennedy was accused of raping his 8-year-old stepdaughter in 1998, badly injuring her during the crime. She testified against him five years later at the trial. When Kennedy was sentenced, he received the death penalty — a punishment typically reserved for those who commit murder.
Kennedy's legal team wants the court to declare Louisiana's law allowing the death penalty for child rape unconstitutional. Only two people in the United States are on death row for nonhomicide offenses, and both are in that state.
Is chemical castration an acceptable punishment for male sex offenders?
Resources used to support "yes"
While depo-provera may be effective in lowering sex drive, administering this drug does not address the real motivation behind this behavior. Furthermore, there is no proven effective "cure" for pedophiles, which means that chemical castration has no value for these crimials. Another criticism is the lack of uniform guidelines for use of chemical castration across the states. And what incentives are avilable to insure that criminals will continue treatment once they are released from custody?
Crimes like rape are committed by sex offenders out of the desire for power over others, and the more violent sex crimes are committed to release rage on victims. Chemical castration may lower the sex drive, but it is not clear that it will erase these motivations for sex crimes. Furthermore, a sex offender may deepen his rage when he contemplates his loss from chemical castration, possibly increasing the probability of further volatile situations.
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