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Boy's body found, sex offender arrested
By BEN NUCKOLS, Associated Press WriterMon Jul 31, 10:22 PM ET
An 11-year-old boy missing since last week was found slain early Monday on a golf course near his home, and a twice-convicted child sex offender was arrested in his death, police said.
An autopsy was being performed on the body of Irvin Harris to establish the cause of death.
Hours after finding the body, police arrested Melvin Jones Jr., 52, inside a downtown fast food restaurant after they got an anonymous tip that he was there. He was charged Monday night with first-degree murder and other crimes, according to Nicole Monroe, a police spokeswoman.
Col. Fred Bealefeld, the department's chief of detectives, described Jones as the Harris family's friend and said there was "every indication" that Irvin's mother knew about Jones' 2002 conviction for having sex with a teenage boy.
"I'm blaming myself right now," Irvin's mother, Shanda Harris, told WBAL-TV. "By trusting Melvin, now my son is gone."
Jones pleaded guilty to child sexual abuse in 1989 and served about seven months in prison, said Joseph Sviatko, a spokesman for the Baltimore state's attorney's office. He pleaded guilty in 2002 to a sex offense involving a 15-year-old boy and was sentenced to a year in prison, Sviatko said.
The victim in the 2002 case met Jones when he was walking home from school, and the two had sex several times over a period of about 18 months, according to court documents. Jones told police while being questioned "that he was a pedophile who needed help," the court documents state.
Jones registered as a sex offender after his 2002 conviction and was on probation, Sviatko said.
Irvin was last seen by his family Friday around noon, when he left for his summer job at a nearby grocery store, Moses said. His body was found before daybreak in a densely wooded section of the Clifton Park Golf Course, out of the sight of golfers.
So, if we had put this animal away for life the first time he got caught, this boy would still be alive??? How many chances do we give adults to injure children. This guy got at least 3 and finally killed one (though the other 2 are psychologically damaged and statistically more likely to become abusers themselves).
My church does not support the death penalty. Fine. As long as life in prison MEANS life in prison, I have no problem with that. But never under any circumstances should a convicted child molester EVER get out of jail. They are, to me, more evil then murderers. They damage thier victims not only physically and mentally, but spiritually as well. The are vile, sub-human filth, who should be wiped from the face of the earth. EVERY SINGLE ONE of them.
Oh, and these people who defend them and hide them and allow their children next to them? We need to take a good hard look at options to prosecute them as well.
Tuesday, August 01, 2006
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Posted by Terri at Tuesday, August 01, 2006