The state of Alabama has passed a bill that seeks to physically punish certain child sex offenders.
HB 379 was introduced by Republican State Rep. Steve Hurst. It targets sex offenders over the age of 21 whose offenses involve anyone under 13, requiring that they undergo chemical castration before being released from prison.
The bill would also require the offender to foot the bill for the procedure, and refusing the procedure would constitute a violation of parole.
Bill Will be Challenged, According to Attorney Johnson
But not everyone thinks the bill will go unchallenged.
“They’re going to challenge it under the Eighth Amendment Constitution,” Attorney Raymond Johnson said of the bill. “They’re going to claim that it is cruel and unusual punishment for someone who has served their time and for the rest of there life have to be castrated.”
According to Johnson, child molestation is already seen as a serious offense with serious consequences, such as time served in prison, probation, and parole.
Hurst Has Introduced This Bill Before
“I had people call me in the past when I introduced it and said ‘Don’t you think this is inhumane?’” Hurst said about the bill.
“I asked them what’s more inhumane than when you take a little infant child, and you sexually molest that infant child when the child cannot defend themselves or get away, and they have to go through all the things they have to go through. If you want to talk about inhumane–that’s inhumane.”
Hurst is hoping that the bill will reduce the number of sex crimes committed against children, by making offenders think twice before they act.
The bill is awaiting signature from Governor Kay Ivey.