Updated: 06/18/2014 11:11 PM
Created: 06/18/2014 11:09 PM WDIO.com
By: Tom Hauser
It’s been nearly two years since a federal judge ordered Minnesota to fix its sex offender program, to allow for some offenders to be released. However, not much has changed and it's an issue in the campaign for Minnesota Governor.
Fifty-eight-year old Thomas Duvall is "exhibit a" in the vexing problem of what to do with the state's worst sex offenders. He's one of about 700 confined at treatment facilities for sex offenders who are in civil commitment after release from prison.
Duvall's been recommended for release, despite admitting to at least 60 sexual assaults; including some involving teenage girls.
Attorney General Lori Swanson wants him to remain locked up and now accuses Duvall of destroying journals he's kept in which he describes violent sexual fantasies.
Republican candidate for governor Kurt Zellers blames the Dayton administration for fumbling the issue.
He says Democrats control the Governor's office, House and Senate; and failed to address the issue.
Dayton declined to comment on camera in time for our deadline, but as he walked into a meeting his press secretary handed out a written statement about Zeller's criticism. He accuses Zellers of "hyper-political posturing.”
The governor goes on to say Zellers did nothing to resolve this situation as a member of the house. And says he "stood silent" while attempts were made to fix it.
In 2012, a federal judge told the legislature to fix the sex offender program, because it's largely become a life sentence after prison release. But no lawmakers want to vote for a bill that looks like they want to release sex offenders.
In his statement, Dayton notes "Duvall is not a prisoner, he is civilly-committed." He also points out the decision to destroy his own personal property is between him and his lawyer. Dayton says it's legal under current law.
Ice Caves to Reopen Thursday Morning
After a short closure, the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore says they will be reopening the ice caves to the public at 7 a.m. Thursday.
Spring Ice Breaking Postponed in the Twin Ports
The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Alder was scheduled to start ice breaking operations on Wednesday, but a public information officer tells Eyewitness News that date has been postponed. He said they will probably go out next week or a little later.
State Bound Hounds: Duluth East Honors Hockey, Robotics, Diver
With three state championships and 22 tournament appearances under their belt, the Duluth East boys hockey team is used to being in the spotlight, but Wednesday, they were happy to share that with a handful of other state-bound hounds.
Go Red For Women: Challengers Have Success
Women who've taken a heart health makeover challenge have lost weight, reduced stress, and lowered their cholesterol levels. And it was time to celebrate them on Wednesday.
7 Minneapolis Gang Members Indicted on Crack Cocaine Charges
A federal grand jury has indicted alleged members of the Taliban gang and the Young N Thuggin gang for conspiring to distribute crack cocaine in Duluth, St. Cloud and the Twin Cities.