Deschutes County Parole and Probation currently has approximately 240 offenders under supervision that have been convicted of a sexual offense. Some of these offenders are on probation. This means that when they appeared before a judge for sentencing, they were allowed to remain in the community, rather than going to prison. Other offenders are on parole or post-prison supervision. This means that the judge sent them to prison and following completion of their term of incarceration, they were released to the supervision of this department.
Of the approximately 240 sex offenders under our supervision, about 99% are male and about 1% are female. Most sexual offenders under our supervision victimized a minor that they knew. Typical circumstances involve a male victimizing his step-daughter, his granddaughter, or his girlfriend’s daughter.
During the last decade, nearly every legislative session has resulted in a change in laws specific to sex offenders. Oregon was one of the first states to have enacted both registration and notification statutes. These statutes have been modified a number of times, with new crimes being added to the list of “registerable” offenses and new requirements regarding notification and residency.
Most sex offenders are released from custody into the community at some point following sentencing or completion of a term of incarceration. Without treatment, many will reoffend. As a result, Deschutes County takes a no-tolerance approach to treatment for sex offenders. We have a strong and dedicated sex offender treatment/supervision team comprised of specialized parole and probation officers and therapists. Written policy and procedure is in place for both the supervision and treatment of sex offenders. Therapists and parole and probation officers meet in person at least monthly for the purpose of refining protocol, staffing cases and any other issues of concern.
Myths and Facts about Sex Offenders
Myth: Most sexual assaults are committed by strangers.
Fact: Most sexual assaults are committed by someone known to the victim or to the victim’s family, regardless of whether the victim is an adult or a child.
Myth: The majority of sex offenders are caught, convicted and sentenced to prison.
Fact: Only a fraction of those who commit sexual crimes are ever apprehended and convicted. Most of those convicted of sex crimes are eventually released to the community.
Myth: All sex offenders are male.
Fact: Although most convicted sex offenders are male, women commit sex offenses and are convicted as well.