Column: State of AL vs. Tyrone Bennett
Published 12:25 pm Friday, June 2, 2023
From 19th Judicial Circuit District Attorney C.J. Robinson
As the District Attorney for Autauga, Chilton, and Elmore Counties I have filed for an injunction in the circuit court of Autauga County to stop the placement of a violent sexual predator to a location that does not comply with the minimum standards required by the Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (SORNA). This is an extreme measure, but one that is required to try and keep our community safe.
Tyrone Bennett is a registered sex offender who has a total of eight prior felonies in Jefferson County (including the Rape of a Child less than 12 years of age; the Sodomy of a Child less than 12 years of age; and the Sexual Abuse of a Child less than 12 years of age; and multiple convictions for failing to comply with the registration and notifications requirements of the SORNA Act).
Bennett was ordered by Jefferson County Circuit Judge Kandice Pickett to be placed in a Cararstar Health Facility (425 Pratt Street in Prattville). My issue with this location is that it is not SORNA compliant. This address is within hundreds of feet of schools, parks, churches, daycares, playgrounds, the city pool, the splash pad, and numerous other things SORNA exists to protect from lurking sex offenders.
This is a target-rich environment of children, and I will do everything within my power to protect them. I have watched our failed Alabama policies, like prison reform and early release, result in two Autauga teenagers kidnapped and sexually assaulted by a man who should have been in prison (October 2022). I have watched our failed federal immigration policy result in an illegal alien with a criminal history be briefly detained at the border, only to then be allowed to enter our country, come to Autauga County, and sexually assault a teenager in the bathroom of a local restaurant (May 2023). I refuse to sit back and allow a judge from Birmingham to enter an order that is contrary to Alabama law and put more Autauga County children at risk. If that is a result of her individual wishes, or the result of a recommendation of the Alabama Department of Mental Health…I don’t know, and I don’t care. I love the 19th Circuit and thank God in Autauga, Chilton, and Elmore Counties we still have judges who honor the rule of law and who still care about the public safety of our communities.
We are seeking a Temporary Restraining Order to prevent Bennett’s release to this address until we can have a hearing for which we are confident we can show this location is not complaint with SORNA and therefore ineligible to house any sex offender ever again.