Missouri's sexual predator law unconstitutional, inmate says

     (AP) – An attorney for a man sentenced to 25 years in

prison for rape is arguing that a Missouri law allowing sexually violent

predators to be indefinitely committed to mental institutions is


     The Missouri Supreme Court heard arguments Thursday from attorneys for Jay

Nelson and the state.

     Nelson was convicted of rape in 1989. While in prison, he was accused of

sexually assaulting female guards.

     The state subsequently classified Nelson as a sexually violent predator. He

has since been committed to the department of mental health until doctors

determine he is safe for release.

     Nelson’s attorney argues that the requirements for release, as set out in the

statute, are impossible to meet. The attorney also says conditions in the

facility are too restrictive for mentally ill patients.


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