immediate release --August 20, 1998.
Contact Bob Brammer, 515-281-6699
of the Attorney General's Office:
The Iowa Attorney General's
Office today filed a petition in Scott County District Court asking the
court to order the civil commitment of Elroy Morrow under Iowa's new law
providing for civil commitment of certain sexually violent offenders upon
completion of their criminal sentence and their release from confinement.
This case is the first filing using the new law, which took effect July
On the First Filing by the State Under the New Sexually
Violent Predator Law August 20, 1998
According to the statute, the State must prove beyond a reasonable doubt
that an offender has previously been convicted of a sexually violent offense
and suffers from a mental abnormality that makes him likely to engage in
predatory acts constituting sexually violent offenses unless confined in
a secure facility.
Morrow has been an
inmate at the Men's Reformatory at Anamosa since 1993. According to the
petition, he was arrested and charged with aggravated criminal sexual
assault in Rock Island, Illinois in 1986 but he was found incompetent
to stand trial and charges were dismissed. In 1989 he was convicted of
aggravated criminal sexual abuse in Rock Island, Illinois. In 1993 he
was convicted of sexual abuse in the third degree in Scott County and
has been serving his sentence at the Men's Reformatory at Anamosa since
that time. All victims of these offenses were children between the ages
of 5 and 13.
Morrow is scheduled
to be transported to the Scott County Jail from the Men's Reformatory
at Anamosa on August 24, his release date. A probable cause hearing will
be held within 72 hours, as required by law. A trial is to be conducted
within sixty days.
If he is committed
after the civil court proceeding, which may include a jury trial, Morrow
would likely be assigned to a special treatment unit at the Oakdale Medical
and Classification Center near Iowa City. The treatment program is run
by the Department of Human Services. Annual reviews of the commitment
are required by the Iowa law.
To be eligible for
the sexually violent predator program, offenders must first be screened
and referred by a Multi-Disciplinary Committee in the Department of Corrections
and recommended to the Attorney General's Office for commitment by a Prosecutors
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