What Is The Legislative Purpose Of The Registry

Empirical research has repeatedly proven that community notification is ineffective at increasing community safety but rather it excels at increasing collateral and direct damage to former offenders and their families, which is increasing daily as citizens use the sex offender websites as hit lists for vigilante actions against offenders , their families, friends and employers. These vigilante actions range from bullying, vandalism, harassment, assaults and even murder. Also legislators are increasingly abusing their power by creating laws, which often violate the Constitution, that are based not on empirical research or sound logic but on emotion, opinion, hysteria and what is popular and most likely to get them reelected. This further adds to the harm done to these former offenders and their families.

I believe it’s time to look at the real problem, the registry itself. If there was no registry then there would be no community notification and no collateral damage. So what exactly is the reason for the registry in the first place besides a bigoted hatred towards a specific group of people? People that I might add have already repaid their debt to society through punishment handed down by the judicial system. If the registry where truly about public safety, rather than hatred and vengeance towards this specific group, then wouldn’t all dangerous criminals be on some sort of registry?

If you look at at the laws, the legislature gives us  insight into their reasoning for the registry’s existence. For example, if you look at the findings of the Nebraska Legislature listed under statute 29-4002 they state the following:

The  Legislature  finds  that sex offenders present a high risk to commit repeat offenses. The Legislature further finds that efforts of law enforcement agencies to protect their communities, conduct investigations, and quickly apprehend sex offenders are impaired by the lack of  available  information about individuals  who have pleaded guilty to or have been found guilty of sex offenses and who live, work, or  attend school  in their  jurisdiction.    The Legislature further finds that state policy should assist efforts of local law enforcement agencies to protect their communities by requiring sex offenders to  register with  local  law enforcement  agencies  as  provided  by the Sex Offender Registration Act.

So the first thing that we should look at is listed in the very first line of their justification for having the registry. That is their belief that, “sex offenders present a high risk to commit repeat offenses”. While the statement may be factual about sex offenders in general it is not true for people who have already been convicted of sex offenses. Once a person is caught and convicted their likelihood of being involved in another sex crime is beyond being extremely small. In the recent Nebraska study that looked at all people involved in sex crimes in Nebraska the re-offense rate was 6/10 of 1% per year. That is the lowest re-offense rate for any criminal class. So the legislature’s justification for having people register if they’ve been convicted or found guilty of a sex crime just vanished.

The second reason they provide as rationale for implementing the registry is, “that efforts of law enforcement agencies to protect their communities, conduct investigations, and quickly apprehend sex offenders are impaired by the lack of  available  information about individuals”.

Has having a registry in any way brought about the conviction of a person on the registry for a new sex crime? To date the answer is no. If a person who is on the registry has been convicted of a new sex crime it was most likely brought about by ordinary police work, and the use of all the high-tech gadgets that law-enforcement has at their disposal rather than the registry playing any part in securing a conviction.

So having people on a registry does not aid law enforcement. Especially when you consider that of all new sex crimes 99.973% are committed by people not on the registry. ( table from NCJ 198251 Exhibit 6F Data from: Recidivism of Sex Offenders Released from Prison in 1994, DOJ:OJP, BJS Report NCJ198281)  This means that in the United States over a three-year period people on the registry were possibly responsible for less then0.027% or 27/1000 of 1% of new sex crimes. So why is law enforcement wasting the resources to run a standalone registry that actually serves no purpose. Not to mention the thousands of hours wasted each year doing compliance checks.

What it comes down to is that the legislature’s reasons for even having the registry are based on falsehoods, lies and misconceptions that were presented to them by vengeful self centered bigots who’s only goal was to seek more punishment to heap on people who have already paid their debt to society.  We as Americans have seen this type of bigoted hysteria before directed at and against what were considered  undesirable groups of people whether it was the hysteria and prejudice directed at individuals because of their political beliefs ( during the McCarthy era), or because of race and color, religious beliefs, or personal choices of lifestyle. It makes no difference what group is targeted or the justifications, when our government uses myths, lies and hysteria to force a agenda on that disfavored group True Americans should stand up united and make it clear that we the people will not tolerate stripping ANYONE of the civil and human rights afforded to them by our Bill of Rights and the Constitution.

12 comments for “What Is The Legislative Purpose Of The Registry

  1. John Doe
    November 20, 2013 at 9:20 am

    You are correct. If the registry was truly risk based and rooted in the protection of the public than sex offenders would be a low priority. The truth is the public is being deceived by our pandering politicians.

    The risk all of us face for a sexual crime is a relation or trusted person and until our country focuses on the real risk with education and public awareness we will continue to trample on an easy target of our fear as countless sex offenses continue.

    This law is rooted in fear and not public safety goals. The math does not add up and the SCOTUS Alaska decision was flawed with misinformation. I pray that in time this registration scheme will be found out for what it is. Thanks for the post and reasoned logic.

  2. November 20, 2013 at 12:16 pm

    Well wow; just wow. This totally breaks it down and exposes the public registry for what it is. Excellent job. Now we just need to get them to pay attention.

  3. November 20, 2013 at 5:14 pm

    When a Vermont State Senator was asked why the Sex Offender Registry was in place, his answer was “We needed the money from the Feds”. So it begs the question, is the registry for the “Good of the People”, or is it good for the Coffers? The registry is a dangerous principle, used to create a scare tactic, in order to falsely allow people to feel safe…

  4. November 22, 2013 at 3:57 am

    Having a public registry is the real problem. Megan’s Law was implemented to satisfy a call to action to seek revenge against all sex offenders. Sex offenders were already required to register for life, but you only had to do it once unless you moved and only the police had access to it. That’s all that was needed. Having the public registry in no way helps the police who already know who the convicted sex offenders are and where they live. I registered in 1980 and never went back until the annual registry was established. For seventeen years I never entered a police station and never saw cop one. Then after few years on the public registry, I failed to list a second address where I sometimes stayed. Next thing I know I’m doing four years for failure to register the additional address. I was registered at my primary home of 27 years, but for this senseless infraction they doubled the time because of my old conviction and sent me off to jail. That’s justice for someone who always complied and registered within one day of my birthday. From 1980 to 1997 I never had a compliance check, a phone call or any contact at all with police and life was quite normal. After the annual registry was established, life became a living hell and remains to this day even though I’m off parole, working steadily and not in any trouble. Still a threat to society I guess!

  5. Scott
    April 4, 2016 at 5:03 pm

    I believe the Registry only enables gangs and/or vigilante justice. Those who support the Registry need to know, by supporting such things like this only opens the door for NOT keeping their community safe. I am pretty sure that in recent news in concern of over crowding in jails/prisons, i could find other reasons to put people in jail for other than failure to report an address or what vehicle they drive. etc etc… How SAFE is your community?? Do you enable gangs and/or bullying?? Think of your kids Folks and the door that was opened. Is this really what you want??

  6. Dodge
    April 5, 2016 at 1:31 pm

    It is said that sex offenders abuse their position of authority by preying on those under their care . Isn’t that exactly what our so called ” legislators ” are doing ?
    The whole world is on fire , we are 20 trillion dollars in debt , and our “legislators” spend their time making
    unconstitutional laws to keep their made up bogeymen under house arrest for the rest of their lives. They make believe the people on the “list” are so dangerous that they cannot live anywhere , work anywhere , travel anywhere , they should be in jail. Their problem is you can’t jail someone for past crimes . That pesky constitution.
    So they make a set of unconstitutional laws just for these people that are so onerous and vague that is is nearly impossible to not break them. Every couple of months they make new hoops for offenders to jump through, then they make those
    hoops higher and smaller hoping you will miss one and then they can jail you.
    These laws have nothing to do with protecting the public . They are clearly designed to put sex offenders back in
    jail without any criminality or due process. These registry laws are nothing more than “Bureaucratic Terrorism.”
    Using a defined group of people to unconstitutionally curry favor and win votes.
    OK I’m done venting now.

  7. Paul
    April 7, 2016 at 1:59 pm

    I actually think a lot of this can be viewed symbolically. The Federal Building in Washington DC is named after a homosexual male who worked his ass off to persecute homosexuals. Our former congressman Mark Foley, a gay male with sexual interest in teens was one of the most outspoken people in congress on the need for a registry. I could give so many more examples but the point is that sometimes the people who smelt it, dealt it. They want the registry and to scapegoat others not just for power and money but also to cover their own personal demons. It’s a theme as old as antiquity.

    • They deal it out of guilt
      April 11, 2016 at 4:52 pm

      Yes, that is called psychological projection and is what the former FBI director, Congressman Foley, et al have done and will continue to do. Makes you wonder how many of our elected officials, hired law enforcement, etc are guilty of this. Your point is correct Paul, smelt it, dealt it….

  8. There is a drunk driving registry...
    April 16, 2016 at 8:55 am

    ….the state of Ohio (https://ext.dps.state.oh.us/omvi/)

    Welcome to Ohio’s Habitual Offender Registry, a database of people who have been convicted at least five times of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, and meet certain other criteria established by law.

    You can search the Registry using any one (or more) of the above search boxes. For example, you can search by last name only, or by county only. Or you can refine your search by filling in multiple search parameters.

    A state law adopted in September 2008 established the Registry, and defined who should be included:

    •Anyone with five or more convictions during the past 20 years (at least one of the convictions must be since the law took effect on September 30, 2008).

    •The Registry does not include convictions more than 20 years old.

    •The Registry does not include deceased people.

    •The Registry does not include out-of-state convictions.

    •Juvenile offenses are included.

    •If a single incident results in multiple impaired driving-related convictions, it is counted as one conviction for purposes of this Registry.

    The Registry is compiled from information Ohio courts report to the Ohio Department of Public Safety and will be updated monthly. Click here to see Ohio Revised Code 5502.10, which established the Registry. Click here to see a complete list of offenses that are considered drunken driving-related for purposes of this Registry.

    • Al
      May 3, 2016 at 10:18 pm

      That seems to be a registry targeted to a specific habitual offender who could reasonably be deemed to be a threat to public safety.
      5 convictions or more within 20 years,

      NOT a first time offender, NOT every offender who even thought about it, NOT totally unrelated crimes, etc.

      That law seems to be targeting habitual drunk drivers and makes sense to me.
      The SORNA laws make absolutely no sense at all, as they are way too broad, include 1st time offenders, are retroactive till the time of Christ, include totally unrelated crimes, and include residency restrictions and presence restrictions among a host of other constitutional issues.

      I still don’t see them restricting these drunk drivers from being around the presence of alcohol, or within 1000 feet of a bar (or school, daycare, playground, etc, which would make more sense) or having to register in person 4 to es a year, or more if something like an email address or Internet identifier changes. Why? Because it violates the first, fourth, fifth, and eighth amendment of the Constitution of the United States of America.

Comments are closed.