Virginia Del. Wants To Make It Harder For Sex Offenders To Change Names | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 : News

Filed Under:

Virginia Del. Wants To Make It Harder For Sex Offenders To Change Names

Play associated audio

It's fairly easy for people in Virginia to change their name, but when it comes to sex offenders, one state lawmaker thinks it should be more difficult.

Like most people in Albemarle County, Del. Rob Bell had heard of Jeffrey Kitze, also known as the "Graduation Day Rapist." In 1989, he came to Charlottesville for his sister's commencement. The following day, when relatives had gone home, he attacked his sister's roommate.

Since then, Kitze's has had other legal problems, and this year he petitioned the circuit court from prison to change his name to Miller. He remains on the state's registry of sex offenders.

"Once you've changed your name, the law requires you to go and register under your new name, but no one will find you," says Bell.

Bell has introduced a bill that would require a hearing before sex offenders could change their name.

"And then also you give notice to the Commonwealth's Attorney, because the Commonwealth s Attorney might not care, or he might say,  'Absolutely not.' This was a very important case, and it s very important for people to be able to locate this person by his given name," he says.

Bell knows this will make it more difficult for convicted criminals hoping to start over again, but in this case he thinks the public need to know should outweigh an individual's wishes.

NPR

If Robots 'Speak,' Will We Listen? Novel Imagines A Future Changed By AI

As artificial intelligence alters human connection, Louisa Hall's characters wrestle with whether machines can truly feel. Some "feel they have to stand up for a robot's right to exist," Hall says.
NPR

Aphrodisiacs Can Spark Sexual Imagination, But Probably Not Libido

Going on a picnic with someone special? Make sure to pack watermelon, a food that lore says is an aphrodisiac. No food is actually scientifically linked to desire, but here's how some got that rep.
NPR

Trump's Campaign Theme Song Headache? Blame Michael Jackson, Sort Of

Candidates keep getting in trouble for picking theme songs without getting approval from the artist. You can trace this back to changes in both campaigning and the way companies sell products.
NPR

In A Twist, Tech Companies Are Outsourcing Computer Work To ... Humans

A new trend is sweeping the tech world: hiring real people. NPR's Arun Rath talks to Wired reporter Julia Greenberg about why tech giants are learning to trust human instinct instead of algorithms.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.