Public Notification of Sexual Offenders

Public Notification of Sexual Offenders

Loretta Young CJS-100

Criminal Justice

Due Date: 2/22/08

Not everyone on the sex offender list are rapists, or child molesters. Many people on the sex offender list were convicted long ago of now legal acts, such as sodomy or oral sex. Now that the sex offender databases are accessible to the public, in wake of Megan’s’ Law, having your name in the database can have devastating consequences. Many people say Michigan sex offender list includes people who are not a threat to society, such as young lover’s or young people whose records were cleared through a state program, yet their names are still on the registry. For these people who are lumped in with the pedophiles and rapists plus the addition of photos will create a bigger nightmare.

Requiring sexual offenders to register with the police department is nothering new in many states, but public access to sex offender databases is fairly a recent phenomenon. Public notification of sexual offenders identify, location and other information was inspired after 7 year old Megan Kanka was raped and murdered by a repeat sex offender in New Jersey. Responding to the public outcry, the U. S. Congress directed the Department of Justice to, maintain a database of all sex offenders, Let the states develop their own database and require the states to enact public notification of the laws. In the fervor of cracking down on pedophiles and rapists, few foresaw the devastating impact these new laws would have on those whom no one expected to appear in the database. Gay men convicted of sodomy before 1976, when it was still a criminal offense, teenagers convicted of statutory rape for having sex with their sweethearts; drunken partygoers convicted of indecent exposure after streaking, these and other people caught in moments of indiscretion have been labeled sexual offenders and pulled into the registration system.

From the web site I have learned...

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