The Orange County District Attorney's Office warned residents that seven high-risk sex offenders have been released months early as part of the efforts in California to slow the spread of the coronavirus in jails, KCBS-TV reported.
"These kinds of high-risk sex offenders are the most dangerous kind of criminal and the most likely to re-offend," Orange County District Attorney Todd Spitzer said in a news release. "They are doing everything they can to avoid detection by the parole officers assigned to monitor them so they can potentially commit additional sex offenses. These are not the kind of people who should be getting a break."
The sex offenders — convicted of crimes ranging from indecent exposure and sexual battery to child molestation — were released beginning April 7, many of them spending just days behind bars instead of the six months required by law for registered sex offenders who violate parole by removing or disabling GPS monitors.
'Let out the front door of a jail by a court commissioner who refuses to follow the law'
Spitzer blasted appointed Court Commissioner Joseph Dane for the release of the sex offenders.
"It is not the Court's responsibility to control the jail population by releasing these dangerous criminals back into our communities," Spitzer said. "The residents of Orange County deserve to have the peace of mind that registered sex offenders are being held accountable and not just let out the front door of a jail by a court commissioner who refuses to follow the law."
Sheriff Don Barnes reported to the Orange County Board of Supervisors Wednesday that county jail population has been reduced by nearly 45% since March 7 and there is no overcrowding issue. Barnes assured that proper steps, including social distancing, masks, and quarantining of new inmates, are in place.
He also corrected inaccurate media reports saying that his office authorized the sex offenders' release:
Please see below for my statement clarifying information that was reported inaccurately. https://t.co/spuD5N3ixg— OC Sheriff Don Barnes (@OC Sheriff Don Barnes)1588186258.0
KCBS detailed the released sex offenders' criminal histories:
- Luis Joel Ramirez, 27, sexual battery, assault with a deadly weapon, resisting a peace officer, burglary possessing a leaded cane
- James Franklin Bowling, 50, lewd conduct in a public place, sex offender on school grounds, failing to register as a sex offender, possession of controlled substances and paraphernalia
- Rudy William Grajeda Magdaleno, 39, child molestation, indecent exposure, assault, battery, criminal threats, inflicting injury on an elder adult
- Calvin Curtis Coleman, 52, lewd conduct in a public place
- Kyle Albert Winton, 40, annoying/molesting a child, criminal threats to cause great bodily injury or death, resisting a peace officer, DUI, hit-and-run with property damage
- Jose Adrian Oregel, 45, unlawful sexual intercourse with a minor, oral copulation of a person under 18, great bodily injury
- Mario Ernesto Sandoval, 45, sexual battery, touching for sexual arousal, indecent exposure, assault on a peace officer, assault
If this sounds familiar...
In New York State, eight sex offenders — three of whom were convicted of raping children — were released from jail in March as a part of Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo's statewide initiative to decrease prison populations over fear of spreading the coronavirus.
Other individuals in California recently were charged with committing crimes shortly after their early release from jails due to the coronavirus.
Rocky Lee Music, 32, about a week ago was charged with carjacking a motorist — and Alameda County authorities told the Associated Press the incident took place about 40 minutes after he was released from Santa Rita Jail in Dublin in the San Francisco Bay Area.