Minnesota's sex offender program may see changes soon, with a task force recommending alternatives to the current high-cost, high-security system, the Pioneer Press reported.
The task force, headed by former state Supreme Court Chief Justice Eric Magnuson, was create to address the question of how to protect the public from sex offenders without violating the constitutional rights of those offenders.
Currently, the more than 600 offenders in the Minnesota Sex Offender Program are being treated in prison-like buildings in St. Peter and Moose Lake at an annual cost of about $120,000 each. Most have served prison sentences and were sent to these treatment facilities by court commitment.
The MSOP was created in 1994 to treat the most dangerous sex offenders. The program has discharged only two offenders since its creation, according to the Star Tribune.
In its recommendations, which are not binding, the task force said the Legislature must fund less-restrictive residential facilities and clear regulatory and legal obstacles that would prevent access to these alternatives.
The task force will continue its work next year.