In Episode 10, “Once You See, You Can’t Unsee”, we speak to Amber and Jason. They co-host a podcast called “Amplified Voices” and are also two people who are directly impacted by sex offense legislation. For example, Jason discusses how difficult it was for him to find employment or travel to different states. Amber shares how the registry has impacted her children. It is important for people to understand that these laws impact their entire families in challenging ways.

In Episode 9, “Why Should I Care?!”, Alexa interviews Dr. Alissa Ackerman about sex crimes policies in the U.S. Alissa is widely considered an expert on sex crimes policy and much of her research has examined the efficacy of the sex offense registry, residence restrictions, and community notification. Notably, her research, and that of most other researchers, have found that sex crimes policies have done nothing to make society safer and have not reduced rates of sexual violence since their implementation.

In this episode we interview Dr. Danielle Harris, a friend and colleague based at Griffith University in Brisbane, Australia, whose work focuses almost exclusively on desistance from sexual offending. What we know from the research is that recidivism rates, or reoffense rates, for people who sexually offend is quite low. In fact, studies consistently find that sexual recidivism rates for those who sexually offend are low.

In this Episode, we sit down with Alexa’s mom, Stacey Branchini, for a intimate, unscripted and candid conversation about the impact of a criminal trial on a survivor and their family. Often referred to as “the second rape”, the criminal trial is often just as traumatizing as the assault itself. This is evident in our decision to invite Stacey to talk with us, because as we worked on writing this episode Alexa was unable to remember many o f the details from after her rape. Including Stacey provides a unique perspective of this process and also highlights how trauma due to the rape impacted Alexa’s ability to recall certain events around that time.

In episode 5 of Beyond Fear: The Sex Crimes Podcast, Alexa and Alissa interview Dr. Nicole Fox, an assistant professor in the Criminal Justice Division at CSUS whose current research focuses on how post-genocide communities remember violence through the creation of national collective memories embodied in memorials and monuments. In “The Weaponization of Sexual Violence” we talk about rape as it is used during war and genocide.

In Episode 4: The Many Reasons Why, Alexa and Alissa breakdown some of the various reasons why people commit acts of child sexual abuse and rape. It might come as a surprise, but there is not one reason why these kinds of offenses happen. In order to prevent future sex crimes from happening and to ensure that people who do sexually offend get the help they need, it is crucial that we understand the factors that lead to offending behavior in the first place.