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Sex offender arrested 1 week after release

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By Eric Stevick
Herald Writer
EVERETT -- A convicted child molester who spent more than two decades behind bars is back in custody a week after being released from Washington's Special Commitment Center on McNeil Island.
John J. Callahan, 40, was booked into the Snohomish County Jail for two violations of his release.
Authorities said he failed to report to his community corrections officer in King County on Monday and crossed county lines to visit his mother without permission.
"He is under very tight supervision," state Department of Corrections spokesman Chad Lewis said. "We can't supervise you if we don't know where you are."
Callahan, who has been living at a homeless shelter in Seattle, reported to his corrections officer on Saturday, but failed to do so on Monday, Lewis said.
The violations don't mean Callahan will be jailed for long.
He'll appear before a hearing officer at the county jail. He can expect to be confined for up to 30 days, Lewis said.
"It is not a crime," Lewis said. "It is considered a technical violation, not a new felony."
Callahan had been convicted of child rape and molestation and had been locked up for 25 years.
Snohomish County prosecutors won Callahan's criminal conviction and later succeeded in having him declared a sexually violent predator.
Callahan originally was supposed to be released from prison in 1998, but prosecutors filed a petition to have him declared a sexually violent predator in need of treatment.
Callahan was convicted of molesting eight children in the 1980s. He went to prison in 1989. He was about to be released in 1998 when prosecutors began a civil case to have him ruled a sexually violent predator. After lengthy wrangling, that happened in 2007.
The state can no longer prove that Callahan is a sexually violent predator, a Snohomish County Superior Court judge ruled in February.
State and federal laws required that Callahan be re-evaluated each year.
The 2011 evaluation did not find he has a mental condition that likely would cause him to commit more sexually violent crimes. The state hired an outside expert to conduct a second evaluation, which reached the same findings.
Eric Stevick: 425-339-3446,
Story tags » Sex Crimes

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