According to an attorney representing a retired police officer facing child pornography charges, the federal Adam Walsh Act is unconstitutional both on its face and as applied to his client. Specifically, the lawyer is challenging a provision of the new law that requires his client to wear an electronic monitoring basis. From the Arizona Daily Star:
Michael Piccarreta contends the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act is unconstitutional as a whole and as it applies to his client, Jefferson Sutton Stahl, because it prevents individual judges from determining whether electronic monitoring is needed.
Stahl, 62, was indicted in January on three counts of possession of child pornography and one count of receipt of child pornography.
His is alleged to have purchased four DVDs containing child pornography in June, one year after retiring from the Tucson Police Department following a 32-year career.
Court records indicate Stahl began communicating online in June 2008 with an undercover U.S. Postal Inspector operating an Internet forum described as "a special group for daddys who love young little munchkins!"
Piccarreta told U.S. Magistrate Judge Thomas Ferraro deciding whether a defendant requires electronic monitoring should be up to the judge, not up to legislation.
"I feel it's inappropriate for Congress to limit judicial power," he said.
Electronic monitoring is an essential part of the pretrial release process for people accused of sex crimes, Assistant U.S. Attorney Carin Duryee said.