THE Stirling Times can reveal a photograph of serial sex offender Dennis John Lyddieth circulating in recent media reports is about 20 years old and significantly different to one published on a government agency website.
The 64-year-old was released from Karnet Prison earlier this month by Supreme Court Justice Ralph Simmonds, who found that while Lyddieth remained a serious danger he could be adequately supervised in the community.
The photograph on the website is available to be viewed only by residents in the Tuart Hill area.
Permitted users of the agency website are subject to strict conditions, including being able to access photos of registered offenders in their area for a short time period. Users must have their address and drivers license number cross-referenced for identification.
A WA police spokeswoman said authorities endeavoured to publish the most recent photograph of offenders on the website.
“These are regularly revised and updated,” the spokeswoman said.
Former Department of Corrective Services senior psychologist Tina Marley said an offender who saw photos of themselves in the media would be highly distressed.
“Contradictorily, this will likely increase an offender’s stress and thus risk of re-offending. Focus should be on minimising stress upon release,” she said.
Police Minister Liza Harvey said the website was a tool to help in the protection and safety of children and the community.
“It is appropriate they have access to an up-to-date photograph,” Ms Harvey said.
The psychology behind rehabilitating a sex offender: www.communitynews.com.au/news/Sex-offender-risk-managed/7679162