Throw the book at him!

I wish I could say I was surprised upon hearing news that Racine mayor Gary Becker had been arrested and charged with 5 felonies and a misdemeanor after engaging in sexually explicit Internet conversations with someone he thought was a 14-year-old girl, but I’m not. Perhaps my cynicism is due to the work I do every day, but stories like this are all too common; they’re just not as newsworthy when the perpetrator isn’t a public official.

According to the criminal complaint against Becker, Becker admitted to having engaged in sexually explicit chats with an individual he thought was a 14 year-old girl, saying he did so from his home. If the criminal complaint is accurate and Becker did admit to his illegal behavior, then it’s my hope he’ll take responsibility for his actions and accept whatever punishment is meted out. Additionally, I hope the punishment handed down to Gary Becker is substantial, both to send a clear and unambiguous message that sex crimes against children will absolutely not be tolerated in our communities, and also to allow Becker to get the sex offender treatment he so obviously needs in order to reduce his risk to society if and when he is ever released from prison.


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