A North California supremacist, 48-year-old Charles Francis Gaskins, has been sentenced in the 2009 death of Neil Hayes – a man he killed because Gaskins believed Hayes was a child molester.
Gaskins was a member of a jailhouse supremacist group known as the Peckerwoods, who vowed to attack anyone with a history of child molestation. Adhering to the club’s directive, Gaskins bludgeoned 66-year-old Hayes to death.
The two men had met and befriended one another while serving time at the Deuel Vocational Institution near Tracy, California. Following his release, Hayes moved in with Gaskins – who was on parole – and Gaskins’ wife, Sandra Sheaves, in their home in Carmichael just outside Sacramento.
Later Sheaves, 43, discovered Hayes was a registered sex offender. She told Gaskins who had been unaware of Hayes’ unhealthy sexual predilection towards children prior to Sheaves finding his profile on the Megan’s Law website.
According to the prosecution, the couple confronted Hayes on June 30 in the garage of the home. Thereafter, Gaskins struck Hayes repeatedly in the head with a large rock. The couple was later arrested and charged in Hayes’ death. Sheaves was cited as an accomplice in her role in tying up and dumping the body in a rural area of Placerville.
Friday, after Gaskins pled no contest to the charge of murder, he was sentenced to 26-years-to-life in prison. Sheaves was given a lesser sentence for being an accessory of eight years. With time already served and other contributing factors, Sheaves is expected to be released after a couple of months.
Megan’s Law provides two major information services to the public: sex offender registration and community notification. Megan’s Law, named after Megan Kanka, is an informal name for the US laws requiring law enforcement authorities to disseminate information to the public regarding registered sex offenders. This data – made available on websites and published in pamphlets and newspapers – is comprised of the criminal’s name, picture, address, incarceration date, and nature of crime.
The Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act – signed into law on July 27, 2006, the 25th anniversary of the abduction and murder of 6-year-old Adam Walsh at the hands of a child predator – supplements Megan’s Law with new registration requirements and a three-tier system for classifying sex offenders according to their risk to the community
Federally, the regulations are referred to as the Jacob Wetterling Crimes Against Children and Sexually Violent Offender Registration Act (the Wetterling Act) of 1994, or simply the Sexual Offender Act, requiring convicted lawbreakers who specifically commit sexually oriented crimes against children to notify local law enforcement of any change of address or employment following release from custody.
The notification requirement may be imposed for a fixed period of time – usually at least ten years – or permanently. It is a felony in most jurisdictions to fail to register or fail to update information.
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