An Alabama lawmaker is making another bid for a new law that would mandate the castration of any offender found guilty of sexually molesting anyone under 12 years of age.
State Representative Steve Hurst (R, 35th District, Calhoun County) introduced HB 365, which would mandate that as a condition for release from jail, convicted sex offenders who were over 20 years of age during the offense and who molested anyone 12 years or younger would be “surgically castrated” with the cost of the operation to be paid by the offender.
Hurst, who has been in the state legislature since 1998, explained his reasoning for the bill, saying, “They have marked this child for life and the punishment should fit the crime.”
The lawmaker said this should act as the ultimate deterrence for such a crime. He also said his constituents have repeatedly asked him to submit the bill.
“I had people call me in the past when I introduced it and said don’t you think this is inhumane? I asked them what’s more inhumane than when you take a little infant child, and you sexually molest that infant child when the child cannot defend themselves or get away, and they have to go through all the things they have to go through. If you want to talk about inhumane–that’s inhumane,” Hurst insisted.
This isn’t the first time the Calhoun County pol has introduced the plan. Hurst has submitted this bill without success three times over the last few years.
However, at least nine states have some form of chemical castration laws already on the books, including Florida, California, Georgia, Iowa, Louisiana, Montana, Oregon, Texas, and Wisconsin.
The bill will have to pass through the Alabama House judiciary committee before going on to the House and Senate for a vote.
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston, or email the author at firstname.lastname@example.org.