A Louisiana man has been sentenced to 35 years in prison and will be forced to undergo chemical castration before he is released.
On March 1, Ryan Clark, 34 pleaded guilty to second-degree rape, molestation of a juvenile under 13, and sexual battery. Details of the 2020 incident were not disclosed to the public.
According to Fox 8, the first 25 years of Clark’s sentence will be served without the possibility of parole or benefits. Before being released he must submit to chemical castration. Clark will also have to register as a sex offender for life and forfeit all parental rights to all children. Injections are to begin at least one week before Clark is to be released.
Chemical castration, which is also called medical castration, is a method to stop sex hormone production using chemicals or drugs. The process is most commonly known as a way to stop sex offenders. Only California, Florida, Iowa, Georgia, Louisiana, Montana, Oregon, Texas, Wisconsin and Alabama have chemical castration laws on the books.
According to the Kronzek Firm, despite its long history and established use, the drugs used in chemical castration, namely medroxyprogesterone acetate (MPA) have never been approved by the FDA for use as a treatment for sex offenders. The law requires that no one may refuse the treatment if they were convicted of a sex crime with a minor under the age of 13, while on parole for a prior sex crime, but they do have the right to choose surgical castration.
Treatment is also ongoing. According to Healthline, depending on the drug and the dose, this must be repeated as often as once a month or as seldom as once a year. Side effects of chemical castration can include reduced or absent sexual desire, erectile dysfunction and shrinkage of testicles and penis.
California was the first U.S. state to specify the use of chemical castration for repeat child molesters as a condition of their parole.
In 2008, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal legalized chemical castration in the state.
Some scholars believe chemical castration is an easier alternative to life in prison or the death penalty, while others say the procedure is inhumane and may not even stop offenders from committing sexual crimes again. Some opposers also say that forcing someone to undergo the procedure violates their constitutional rights even if they’re criminals.
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