Thousands of convicted pedophiles in California have been released back onto the streets after spending just months behind bars, a new report found.
A Daily Mail investigation, which examined a database of convicted sex offenders in California, found that there were more than 7,000 pedophiles convicted of “lewd or lascivious acts with a child under 14 years of age,” who were released from prison after serving less than one year.
Daily Mail senior reporter Josh Boswell, who broke the story, told Tucker Carlson on Tuesday that he had to bypass limitations on California’s Megan’s Law website to gather statistics on registered sex offenders in the state as the California Justice Department refused to provide him with the data.
“I wrote a bit of code to pull down some of that public information….we asked them to give us the data, but they refused,” he said on “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” “so I had to write this script to put it together so I could show the public.”
In this Aug. 16, 2016, file photo, a row of general population inmates walk in a line at San Quentin State Prison in San Quentin, California. Three-quarters of California’s district attorneys sued the state Wednesday in an attempt to block emergency rules that expand good conduct credits and could eventually bring earlier releases for tens of thousands of inmates.
(AP Photo/Eric Risberg, File)
Megan’s Law is a federal law that requires law enforcement to make information on sex offenders available to the public. It was passed during the Clinton administration after the murder of New Jersey 7-year-old Megan Kanka in 1994.
Boswell said the results of his search were “quite shocking,” pointing out specific examples of predators convicted of continuous sexual abuse of a child who spent just months in prison, and in some cases, just two days behind bars.
One of the sex offenders who was returned to the streets less than a week after he was convicted of continuous sexual abuse of a child now “lives one block from a daycare according to the database.” Boswell said.
The investigation examined 54,986 sex offenders listed on the Megan’s Law website as of July 2019 and found 76% of the offenders committed crimes involving kids. The data was determined by comparing the published dates of a pedophile’s conviction versus their release date.
“There’s a sense that maybe there are a few people who haven’t really been convicted of anything super serious. Actually, there are 19,000 of the 55,000 that we saw who are convicted of this molesting under 14 [year olds.] These are serious offenses,” Boswell said. “These are people that are spending a few months in prison for these really awful heinous crimes.”
A number of California officials who were asked about the report’s findings blamed policies endorsed by Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom which have allowed shortened sentences and early release for convicted criminals.
Boswell said he contacted the California District Attorney as well as Newsom’s office – both of whom deflected blame or ignored his inquiry on the issue.
California Democrat Gov. Gavin Newsom.
(Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)
“Gavin Newsom himself hasn’t spoken on this at all. What they were telling me is that this isn’t their problem. It’s the courts. It’s the local DA’s. Really, this is a problem for the whole state of California,” Boswell said.
“Prosecutors I spoke to said this could be partly a result of wanting to release prisoners early from prison because they’re wanting to let nonviolent offenders out and reduce the prison population. The problem is,” Boswell continued, “among those ‘non-violent offenders’ are some of these pedophiles that have a high risk of re-offending, according to the studies done on those kinds of people.”
Neither Gov. Newsom’s office nor the California attorney general’s office responded to Fox News Digital’s requests for comment earlier Tuesday.
Fox News’ Emma Colton contributed to this report.