Gibson bill bans owners from loaning vehicles to predators
Legislative outcry over sexually violent predators continues with a fifth bill filed in the wake of a searing newspaper investigative series.
Sen. Audrey Gibson, a Jacksonville Democrat, filed a measure (SB 562) that would ban a person from allowing a sexual predator to borrow their vehicle in most cases.
Earlier this month, Senate committee chairmen filed a package of four bills prompted by the South Florida Sun Sentinel’s report in August that nearly
600 sexually violent predators had been released only to be convicted of new sex offenses — including more than 460 child molestations, 121 rapes and 14 murders.
Gibson’s bill is in response to the murder of an eight-year-old Jacksonville girl, Cherish Perrywinkle, in June. Recently-released sex offender Donald Smith was accused of abducting, raping and strangling the child. Smith allegedly used his mother’s van in the crime.
A proposal (SB 528) by Senate Criminal Justice Committee Chairman Greg Evers, R- Baker, would require registered sexual predators to report their vehicle information — along with Internet identifiers, palm prints, passports, professional licenses, immigration status and volunteer work at higher-education institutions.