City News Service
Three legislative hearings will be scheduled to make sure that Chelsea's Law, the measure passed following last year's rape and killing of a Poway High School senior, is being implemented as it was conceived, the victim's family said Friday.
The parents of Chelsea King, Brent and Kelly King, made the announcement at a news conference in Mira Mesa also attended by Assemblyman Nathan Fletcher, R-San Diego.
One hearing will be to determine how the new Sex Offender Management Board and Department of Corrections are doing in creating risk management models and treatment standards and to find out if deadlines are being met or if obstacles are being encountered.
The second hearing will be on the results of an audit of the Department of Mental Health's Sex Offender Commitment Program, which determines if inmates due for release can be held longer as sexually violent predators.
The third will be to find out if the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation is implementing reforms to its GPS monitoring program, which was found to be deficient after Chelsea died.
"New laws and procedures only work if they are fully implemented and utilized," Fletcher said.
"We are committed to remaining vigilant and ensuring that errors of the past don't happen again. We will do everything possible to make our communities safe from violent sexual predators.''
The 17-year-old Chelsea was jogging along a trail above Rancho Bernardo Community Park on Feb. 25, 2010, when she was grabbed by convicted sex offender John Albert Gardner III, raped and killed. Her body was found on the shore of Lake Hodges several days later at the end of an intensive search by law enforcement and volunteers.
Gardner later admitted that he killed both Chelsea and, a little over one year earlier, 14-year-old Escondido High School freshman Amber DuBois. He was sentenced to life in prison without parole.
"As important as the passage of Chelsea's Law was to our family, the implementation is exponentially more important," Brent King said. "We are working hard to make sure it is not an idle piece of legislation."
The Kings, who are working to pass Chelsea's Law in other states, plan to attend at least one of the hearings, which will be scheduled in the next few months, according to Fletcher.