FEDERAL SON OF SAM LEGISLATION Mr. DORGAN. Mr. President, last week we debated the Juvenile Justice Act. We had a good number of provisions, especially dealing with guns, gun shows, and gun sales that were very controversial. I did not speak last week on an amendment I offered to the juvenile justice bill that became a part of that and is now a provision that has been passed by the Senate. I want to take a few minutes today to describe the amendment I offered and its importance.
Some while ago, I was watching a television program. It was about a serial killer, a man who killed four women and one man in Gainsville, FL. The program described the book this serial killer has written: ``The Making of a Serial Killer: The Real Story of the Gainsville Murders in the Killer's Own Words.''
I thought: That cannot be the case. If you murder four or five people and are sent to prison, you lose your right to vote and you lose certain rights. Do you have a right to write a book and profit from it? This television program described the dilemma.
There was a murderer in New York who was described as the ``Son of Sam'' murderer many years ago. He was sent to prison and wrote a book in order to profit from his murder. In other words, a violent murderer goes to prison and spends his time writing a book to sell to the public to make money. Is that a right prisoners have in this country after committing a violent crime? Is there a constitutional right to profit from a violent crime in America? I do not think so.
The State of New York passed a statute, the ``Son of Sam'' statute, and the Federal Government passed a statute saying that the proceeds from a book written by a violent offender who is sent to prison cannot be retained by the violent criminal.
That was appealed and went to the U.S. Supreme Court. Guess what. The U.S. Supreme Court said: No, you may not prohibit the expressive writings of a violent criminal, because that is a violation of the first amendment. I am truncating the Supreme Court decision, but essentially the Supreme Court invalidated the ``Son of Sam'' laws. The Federal law has never been enforced, to my knowledge, and the State laws have been invalidated.
So we had a circumstance where, on the program I watched, this serial killer was interviewed. The woman with whom he apparently is romantically involved, who is one of the sponsors of this book, was interviewed. It raised the question in my mind: Shouldn't we correct this issue and these statutes so the next time this goes to the Supreme Court, the Supreme Court will not overturn the law?
I wrote a piece of legislation, after consultation with some constitutional lawyers, that I think does solve this issue and will say to any prospective author, some disgusting human being who murders four young girls and a man in Gainsville, FL, who now says, I want to write a book to describe the detail, the horrible detail of these murders: You can write until you are dead, but you will never ever profit, you will never profit by writing the accounts of your murders and then sell a book and keep the money. Not just you, but your agent, those to whom you assign the profits--you will not be able to reap the rewards of telling the gruesome, dirty tales of your sordid criminal lives.
The juvenile justice bill which passed last Thursday has an amendment in it that closes the loophole and rewrites the Federal law. It says that any individual convicted of any Federal or State felony or violent misdemeanor, if that convicted defendant tries to sell his book, movie rights, or other expressive work or any property associated with the crime--a bloody glove, murder weapon, photos and so on--whose value has been enhanced by that crime, then the U.S. attorney will make a motion to forfeit all proceeds that would have been received by the defendant or the defendant's transferee--spouse, partner, friends, and so on.
Is this important? I think it is. I think we ought to have a Federal statute, and if the Supreme Court said the ``Son of Sam'' statute is not valid, we ought to have a Federal statute that says to anybody in this country: If you commit a violent crime and you go to prison, do not expect to sit in prison and write and profit by publishing a book about your crime.
I offered that in the Senate last Thursday, and I was joined by my colleague, Senator EVAN BAYH. It has now passed the Senate, and my hope is my colleagues in the House will see fit to keep this in the Juvenile Justice Act, and it will go to the President and be signed into law.
(The remarks of Mr. DORGAN pertaining to the submission of S. Res. 105 are located in today's RECORD under ``Submissions of Concurrent and Senate Resolutions.'') END
The "Son of Sam" Law in Florida is codified at F.S. 944.512. In Rolling v. State ex rel. Butterworth, 741 So. 2d 627 (1999, FL 1st DCA), Appellee State, pursuant to Fla. Stat. ch. 944.512, sought imposition of a lien against property in an action against appellant, convicted criminal, especially seeking proceeds from sale of a book containing accounts of the crimes for which appellant was convicted. Appellants argued that Fla. Stat. ch. 960.291(7) violated U.S. Const. amend. I and was, therefore, unconstitutional both on its face and as applied to each of them. Under the plain language of the statute the lien encompassed appellant's art, autographs, and proceeds from them, as well as proceeds from his book. Appellant publisher was receiving benefits on appellant offender's behalf and thus the lien attached to the proceeds she garnered from sale of property. Appellant offender could not transfer his property to appellant publisher to avoid the lien.
In 1997 the State of Florida sued convicted serial killer Danny Rolling and his fiancé/freelance writer Sondra London for the $21,000 the two received from the sale of Rolling's story in books and magazine articles. Based on Florida's Son of Sam Law, also known as the Civil Restitution Lien and Crime Victims’ Remedy Act of 1994, London was ordered to turn over the money to the state. London appealed but the decision was affirmed.
All information and text found at Congressional Chronicle software (C) National Cable Satellite Company 2009
Unbelieveable this Circus. Allegations of Baex passing Casey contaband in court, looking for a Patsy in Casey's many lovers, selling Caylees photos. Once they dropped the investigation into Baez's inappropriate behavior he took it as a sign he was free to act like a complete idiot!
I just finished reading the: Amended Notice of Service of Interrogatories presented to Casey Anthony’s lawyer. This is essential a list of questions that Casey Anthony has 30 days to answer in regards to Zenaida Fernandez-Gonzalez’s lawsuit filed against Casey Anthony. The questions there make it obvious to anyone why Casey’s lawyer will not let her answer them; they will force her to tell the truth.
As I was reading the questions that referred to Casey’s statements to police so light bulbs came on in this old noggin. Question 9 refers to a description Casey gave of “Zanny’s” car. As it appears on official file: 9. Before you told law enforcement officers that Caylee was with to Zenaida Gonzalez the last time you saw her, were you aware that a to Zenaida Gonzalez had been to Sawgrass Apartments and was driving a car with New York tags?
Notice the end of the question; it refers to New York tags. Please tell me Baez’s little trip to New York was not because Casey said this. This is where the whole line of statements from Casey on jailhouse video referring to “Zanny” having family in New York. Bingo! Remember the jailhouse video of Casey and her parents when they said Baez was in New York and Casey said it was on business for her. Good grief this is nuts. This girl (Casey) spent the whole month Caylee was missing putting this fairy tale together with things she picked up here and there. It is as obvious as the nose on Barbara Streisand’s nose.
Question 11 refers to Casey’s, Counter Suit states that “Zanny” had 2 children, then in question 12 it says that Casey’s Motion to Stay or Defer Defendants Deposition states that Casey told police that “Zanny” was 24 and had no kids. Question 12 ends with “which part is true and which part is not. Duh, none of it is true and it does not make Baez’s and motions he continually files look very professional.
Question 14 states that “the Counter-Claim states that Zenaida Gonzalez is a common name in the Hispanic community and there are 20 listings in the OC Florida area alone. If so what phone book did you use”? I seem to recall when the police interviewed Casey she was adamant about the hyphen between Fernandez and Gonzalez. Is the hyphen not important now?
This mockery of the justice system has got to cease. What right does Baez have or any lawyer for that matter, to act in this idiotic, shameful, non-professional manner. I understand that he has to defend his client to the fullest but this is ridiculous. Even lay persons are shaking their heads in amazement of the audacity of this man. The blatant Bugs Bunny like routine this lawyer displays with his big toothy grin is sickening.
I can not believe that the investigation into this mans actions was dropped. If the common citizen can pick out the grammar school mistakes he makes and comment on his shameful display of affection with Casey Anthony why can the Big Guns not see this? Wearing rose colored glasses perhaps. Maybe they, like many, do not want their name tied to Casey Anthony. It is similar to Typhoid Mary thing I guess. Once you connect, it is goodbye Charlie.
I had a day like I have not had in a long time. For the mere sum of ten dollars I purchased a February 21, 1964 issue of Life magazine that features Lee Harvey Oswald and a 1933 issue of True Detective magazine featuring the famous DuBois Slaying. I have framed them in nice frames for safe keeping and they now adorn my office wall. If you knew how much I love researching crime you would understand my excitement. I feel like the kid who wanted the Red Rider BB gun for Christmas and finally got it.