Black Swan Alert: Early Release of Sex Offenders Prompts Change to Indiana Law

May 1st, 2012

Sound the black swan siren!

Indiana lawmakers are planning changes to the state’s early release law in response to this week’s slated release of two convicted sex offenders who significantly shortened their prison terms by earning college degrees.



Republican Sen. Jim Merritt of Indianapolis said Tuesday the law’s shortcoming is illustrated by the case of Christopher Wheat, a former high school swim coach convicted of having a sexual relationship with a 14-year-old female swim student.

Wheat, 38, is scheduled for release Thursday from the New Castle Correctional Facility after serving less than two years of his eight-year sentence. Merritt said Wheat “manipulated the system” to cut his sentence to about 20 months by earning two computer science degrees behind bars.

“I think he gamed the system. And we need to make sure nobody does that anymore,” Merritt said. “We all believe education in prison should be for the rehabilitation of one’s character and preparing them for their life as an ex-offender.”

Oh I don’t even know where to start here, though wherever I start, I’m pretty sure Merritt’s views on retributive justice will fall.

H/T Jacob Berlove