“I’m not a bad person, I just fucked up,” said Joe Shankwitz, 56. He was once married with two sons, a dog, a nice house with a pool. He led a scout troupe, coached football, and was a baseball umpire. Then he got heavily into alcohol and Xanax. “I’d come home from work, drink, take some Xanax, jump on the computer and into some chat rooms, and ended up chatting and sending pictures to a detective who was pretending to be a 14-year-old girl,” he said.
Joe served 3 ½ years in prison and got 54 months of probation. “It had to happen because I couldn’t control my urges. But, in prison you don’t have that choice, they take that away from you. People used to see me for what I did, not who I am. You have to prove yourself as a person all over again.”