Housing Options Reviewed For High-Risk Sex Offender

9/2/17 – Potential housing options were reviewed yesterday for a high-risk sex offender from Dodge County. Both the state and the county are working together to find suitable housing for 31-year-old Jonathan Miller, who is overdue for release from the Sand Ridge Secure Treatment Center in Mauston because appropriate housing has not yet been secured. During a review hearing yesterday, Scott Timm with the state Department of Health Services told the court that a vendor has expressed interest in three locations: two of which are in Dodge County and one in Shawano County. Since Health Services only rents properties for high-level offenders, the department works through a vendor. State law requires the return of high-level offenders to their county of origin for supervised release, unless housing cannot be found. Miller has made several attempts at placement over the past two years but none have panned out. Judge Brian Pfitzinger ruled yesterday that Shawano County would be an approved site. Another review hearing is scheduled next month for an update on the three possible housing options. There are very few so-called Chapter 980 sex-offenders in Wisconsin – around 15 each year – but there are currently two from Dodge County who are still in a detention facility long after their release date. Miller and a second Chapter 980 offender, Robert Larson Jr, sparked statewide headlines in 2015 when they were placed next door to kids in the Brownsville area. They were subsequently removed by the courts leading to statewide legislative changes along with numerous failed attempts at placement. Eventually if no housing options are found, officials say state judges will have to support the constitutional rights of the offender and release them without oversight.