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November 6, 2006

Really Perverted Justice

Another bizarre side effect from our nation's misguided anti-pervert campaign: This week, former Kaufman County, Texas, District Attorney Louis Conradt shot himself after PervertedJustice.com and NBC tried to entrap him for soliciting, online, someone posing as a 13-year-old boy (Associated Press). A couple of months ago, Gelf came down hard on such sensationalist pervert vigilantism, and specifically noted that Dateline NBC's "To Catch a Predator" and sites like Perverted Justice were causing more problems than they were fixing. Now, a legally innocent man is dead.

As a result of Conradt's death, his hometown of Murphy would no longer allow such vigilantism, the mayor said, but Perverted Justice appears to be remorseless. "It is unfortunate that he chose this end rather than to have his day in court," the website states. "We're very pleased with the results of this sting operation."

Then they take some shots at Murphy's mayor: "With public statements like [the mayor's], he is putting internet predators on notice…
just the wrong kind of notice. By threatening his own police force and saying he doesn't want stings to continue in his town, he is telling predators…
'Hey, kid says he is from Murphy, Texas? Come molest them!' "

To recap:
Child molestation = Bad.
Claiming to fight child molestation while misinforming the public in a revolting attempt to make money and ratings = Even Worse.

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