Washington officials seek civil commitment of sex offender

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OLYMPIA, Wash. — The Washington state Attorney General’s Office is seeking to keep a convicted sex offender from being released back into the community by way of civil commitment.

The Columbian reported Wednesday that 39-year-old Michael Canty was convicted in 2001 of indecent liberties with forcible compulsion and first-degree burglary with sexual motivation. Officials are hoping to keep him in a post-sentence institutional detention center, citing he might have intentions of committing further offenses.

Canty was scheduled to be released in August 2016, but is being held at the Special Commitment Center awaiting trial, which began earlier this week in Clark County Superior Court.

In 1990, Washington became the first state to pass a law permitting the involuntary civil commitment of sex offenders after they serve their criminal sentences.

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