A Sex Registration Horror Story

Discussion in 'Law and Justice System' started by George Costanza, Jul 16, 2010.

  1. George Costanza
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    George Costanza A Friendly Liberal

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    I will call him "Joe" (not his real name). Joe is 55 years old. When he was in his 30's, Joe was convicted of a sex crime - the type of sex crime that requires him to register with the police department under California's sex registration law (Penal Code, Section 290).

    Joe is a transient - a homeless person. He has no address to give the police. In cases such as that, the law requires the person to register every 30 days at the police station nearest to where he most normally is located. Joe faithfully did that.

    In November of law year, Joe's driver's license expired. He went to DMV to get a new one. DMV asked him for an address. He said he did not have one. They told him he had to give them one or they would not renew his license. He said, "Well, I do have an address where I get mail." He was told to put that address down, and he did - indicating on the DMV form that it was a "mail only" address.

    A month or so ago, a Sheriff's detective whose job it is to monitor sex registrants in the area, ran a routine check on Joe. As part of such a check, the detective contacts DMV to see whether or not any current address have been listed there by the registrant. He found the address which Joe had given DMV as a "mail only" address.

    The detective went to the address. He was told by the guy who lived there, that Joe only used the address to receive mail. He also told the detective that sometimes he lets Joe sleep in the garage in return for doing yard work. When asked how often Joe slept in the garage, the homeowner said, "once a week or so."

    Armed with this information, the detective sought, and obtained, a felony filing against Joe for violation of PC 290. What might that violation be? The detective located an osbscure California Department of Justice rule which says that if a person stays at one location as little as once a week, they must designate that address as their residence address, and register it at the local police station. Since Joe was registering as a transient, and had not listed the mail only address as his residence, he was in violation of the law according to this detective and the DA that filed the case.

    Anyone smell anything here? Joe was doing everything he could to comply with the registration law. He had no knowledge of the "once a week" rule. He thought he was doing everything right. Joe was not trying to hide anything from anybody. Too bad.

    Oh, yes - since most sex crimes are strikes in California, Joe is looking at a minimum of 32 months in state prison if he is convicted.

    Joe is upset. So am I.
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2010
  2. Quantum Windbag
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    Quantum Windbag Gold Member

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    Add me to the list.
     
  3. Gremlin-USA
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    Gremlin-USA <<< Me in 1970

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    The laws that are designed to protect are sometimes skewed beyond belief.

    I no of someone who was a respectable businessman and part time charity volunteer, one time he was on the back nine of the golf course and had to go whizz, afraid he could not make it to the bathroom, he went in the woods, well a lady about 300 yards away saw him stading behind a tree, she could not see a stream or anything, only saw him walk behind a large pine tree in the woods, the man now has to register as a sex offender, she called the police and then he admitted it 1 hour later to them at the clubhouse, that is what he got for his honesty and having a busybody lady who could only guess what he did......


    .
     
  4. George Costanza
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    George Costanza A Friendly Liberal

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    Stories like that make me sick.

    I will say this, however. The guy should have fought the case. I know - no one wants to go into court and defend that type of a case. However, when one considers what happens if you are convicted (registration), I think the choice should be obvious.
     
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2010
  5. xotoxi
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    xotoxi Platinum Member

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    I'm sorry to hear about your predicament, "Joe".
     
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  6. AllieBaba
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    AllieBaba BANNED

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    Good. He shouldn't be out in the first place.
     
  7. AllieBaba
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    AllieBaba BANNED

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    One of the requirements for most people out on parole is to maintain a residence and a job.

    Joe is doing neither. Poor sex offender. Living off the radar, like all good sex offenders try to do.

    Let's hear some more about the neighborhood where the garage is. How many kids right close by? Who hangs out at Joe's? I can guess, and I imagine the cop was onto him too.
     
  8. goldcatt
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    goldcatt Catch me if you can! Supporting Member

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    It didn't say he was on parole, Allie. Nor does it say what his crime was. Some sex crimes are truly heinous and I would agree the people who commit them shouldn't be out - ever. But some make me shake my head over why the offenders would have to register at all.

    Regardless, if the man was following the rules as they were explained to him, all I can say is WTF? Don't these detectives have anything better to do?
     
  9. Madeline
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    Madeline BANNED

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    I agree with goldcatt.
     
  10. westwall
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    westwall USMB Mod Staff Member Gold Supporting Member Supporting Member

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    I wonder what his crime was? I find it interesting that that was left out of the discussion.
    Joe would have done well to keep his nose clean however, especially now with the J.C. Dugard case ringing very harshly in the ears of all CA LEO's.

    I think that ANY sex offender is going to have a harder time of it in CA. And rightly so.

    If you did the crime you have to live with the consequences. If you didn't then you should fight like hell to clear your name.
     

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