NJ Supreme Court: some Megan’s Law amendments unconstitutional

By Michael Booth . . . The New Jersey Supreme Court on Wednesday held 2014 amendments to Megan’s Law enhancing certain penalties for sex offenders who violate parole requirements unenforceable against four defendants based on the ex post facto clauses of both the state and federal constitutions.

The court, in a unanimous ruling, vacated the convictions and sentences of four paroled sex offenders who committed minor violations of their parole conditions and mounted a challenge to the laws. The ruling vacates the convicts’ third-degree convictions for the parole violations.

“A law that retroactively increases or makes more burdensome the punishment of a crime is an ex post facto law,” wrote Justice Barry Albin for the court. “The Amendment, therefore, is an ex post facto law that violates our Federal and State Constitutions as applied to defendants.”

Read the full piece at the New Jersey Law Journal.

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    • #41298 Reply
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      TDAL

      In the notorious case, Alaska v. Doe (Smith V Doe) Mr. Roberts stated in err the following, “,Registration itself imposes no affirmative disability.” A big fat fallacy.
      Registration forms demand a wide spectrum of information. Therefore registration imposed a disability to remain silent. How else can a state learn about internet IDs without placing an agent over your shoulder to view what sites you visit. The right to remain silent is sacred, or it used to be. Without is the constitution is DOA.

    • #41316 Reply
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      Maestro

      I wish you guys would just post the full article. Many of us don’t want to sign up for these news media sites and get tons of junk mail from them just to read 1 story.
      Another reason you should post full articles is that many news media sites are now only allowing a log in via Facebook, which many of us cannot use. 🤷🏻‍♂️

      • #41788 Reply
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        TDAL

        Maestro,

        Caution must be used when using written material from outside sources. Posting an entire item can lead to copyright conflicts. I am not a member of NARSOL, just an interested party, but I think they take the correct approach.

        Yes, you and all registrants suffer speech infringement from FB – TOS. I presume you hint at the difficulties signing up for accounts as it relates to third party sites insisting on linkage to popular com-nets, AND most onerous state’s insisting on disclosure of said ids, has you opting out. You suffer the chilling effects of Big brothers use of the databases.

        Ironically, NARSOL does not suffer the same restriction as it is operated by a person not on the electronic list. It too founders however via chilling effect as clicks to and from the FB site would expand dramatically IF registrants were permitted speech via link post likes of thumbs up!

        I believe NARSOL could attempt suit because Sandy’s FB site suffers via FB TOS.
        Can M.Z. really claim he does not knowingly hinder her individual ability to grow her FB following even if it is a group he does not like!

    • #41342 Reply
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      Anthony

      This is nothing but ongoing punishment to Sex Offenders in a vindictive manner and all laws applied retroactively is double jeopardy period. These S.O. laws will eventually be abolished.

    • #41641 Reply
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      d

      “A law that retroactively increases or makes more burdensome the punishment of a crime is an ex post facto law,” wrote Justice Barry Albin for the court. “The Amendment, therefore, is an ex post facto law that violates our Federal and State Constitutions as applied to defendants.” Notice how obvious it is to this judge kind of makes you wounder if it is an obvious violation what the law maker was thinking when they made the laws or what other motive they had besides making fair and just laws to benefit the citizens. The law maker needs to be asked why did you ignore the constitution when you made your law? Then they need to be punished like they sought to do to the citizens that are at their mercy.

    • #43055 Reply
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      Terry Richardson

      Seeking information as to registered sex offender on registry without commiting a sexual crime..crime includes a child being in the vicinity of an assault..if there’s legal counsel out there that could give insight in this matter would be deeply appreciated.

    • #43666 Reply
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      Shallon rubin

      Does this ruling mean anything for other offenders with minor parole violations resetting the clock on their 15 years? I don’t understand how that wouldn’t fall under the same category. So because my fiancé went to work instead of therapy and was violated under an indictment he can’t apply for removal from this law after 17 years of complete compliance and jumping through hoops? Anyone have insight on this?

      • #44445 Reply
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        MikeC

        Nothing about CSL or the registry makes any sense to me whatsoever.
        To answer your question to the best of my ability,
        Money. Pure greed at the expense of helpless, hopeless & silent people.

    • #45239 Reply
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      Christina A

      I can’t understand how my sister’s husband can get out of prison from Oregon Robert Elam and abscond to New Mexico Albuquerque and because Oregon doesn’t want to pay to send him back even though he has absconded 2 X. New Mexico refused his Interstate transfer and he absconded to New Mexico anyways he was sent back was in jail for a short time and absconded back to New Mexico yes he’s registered here because I stayed on them the Sheriff’s Department. However I don’t understand how this man can continually harass me with physical threats and authorities know that he has absconded from Oregon was still several years of probation left to serve but can come to New Mexico and between New Mexico and Oregon not have to be accountable for his actions. He has stated many times that he has no restrictions here in New Mexico that he can be around children teenagers or whatever and it’s not a problem how can you Mexico and Oregon put our children In Harm’s Way because of budget issues. In other words you’re saying that if you commit a crime in one state and abscond to another state that you’re no longer responsible for your actions in another state what kind of example is that giving criminals in general. Robert Elam thinks that he is the law and pretty much he’s getting away with it he couldn’t pass a polygraph test to even get a chance for an interstate transport on the Oregon side of the system this is so backwards and twisted I don’t understand it one bit

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