"Where Fillmore County News Comes First"
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Fri, Dec 20th, 2002
Posted in Features
Posted in Features
More than 50 concerned residents turned out for a Community Notification Meeting at the Lanesboro Community Center on Thursday evening to find out more information about a Level 3 Sex Offender who was released into the community. The meeting was conducted by the Fillmore County Sheriff’s Department in conjunction with the Minnesota Department of Corrections (DOC).
Jason Duane Sveen, 24, was released from prison on December 11. Sveen was 19 when he was charged with using force to have sexual contact with a 14 year old girl in a Rochester motel. Sveen was sentenced to 78 months with the DOC, of which 52 months were served in prison. Mark Bliven of the DOC made a power point presentation to the audience detailing the history of the notification process and the nature of Sveen’s supervised release. Bliven said that community notification prepares the community for a constructive response to receiving sexual predators. “The law is not designed for further punishment,” Bliven said. “He has served his time.” Bliven said that getting information into a community helps residents become “smarter” about sexual offenders. Bliven said that Sveen will serve five years under supervised release. “Supervised release is a transition between prison and resuming a normal life,” Bliven said. Sveen will live in rural Lanesboro with relatives. During that time, Sveen is expected to live a lawful lifestyle and comply with directives of probation officers. He cannot have direct or indirect contact with minors, other than accidental casual contact one might find at a public place. He cannot go to events where minors congregate, such as sporting events or parks, nor can he use the Internet. Sveen will be on electronic home monitoring for the first four months of his supervised release, with probationary agents making unscheduled visits and searches at the offenders home. According to Steve King, probation officer with DOC, Sveen will be expected to be involved in productive activity, such as work or going to school. He will also have to attend a treatment program. King said that Sveen is presently applying for jobs and is trying to get his drivers license. During the question and answer session, some residents were critical of the timing of the notification. Media reports detailing Sveen’s release first appeared on December 12, one day after Sveen was released from prison. King said that Sveen was originally scheduled to be released in Olmsted County. “Two days before his release, we were notified that he could live with relatives,” King said. “While the placement was an appropriate one, the timing was not.” Tracy Lambrecht asked about the success rate that Level 3 offenders have with treatment. Blivens responded that 9% of Level 3 offenders are re-arrested. Both Blivens and Fillmore County Sheriff Jim Connolly credited the combination of treatment and the effects of supervised release with bringing this statistic down. Connolly encouraged residents to educate themselves and react responsibly. “He can go about and do his business,” Connolly said. “But he can’t be hanging out on the streets with a group of minors.” King said that for the first four months, all of Sveen’s activities have to be approved by supervisors. “Over time, the more successful he (Sveen) is, the more freedoms he will have,” noting that Sveen will be registered as a sex offender with the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension through 2017, assuming he does not offend again. Law enforcement officials encouraged residents to report criminal activity by Sveen or any other sexual offender by calling 911. For more information about the about the terms of Sveen’s release, people can call Investigator Daryl Jensen at the Fillmore County Sheriff’s Department at 507-765-3874 or DOC Supervision Agent Greg Roti at 507-455-5872. People are also encouraged to visit the DOC website at www.doc.mn.us for pictures of Sveen which are updated regularly.