Michigan ACLU: “The registry is broken”

By Clifton French . . . Could the sex offender registry soon be a thing of the past? The American Civil Liberties Union wants to possibly get rid of it, saying the registry doesn’t work. Right now, there are two cases out of Michigan, including a class action lawsuit, claiming several parts of the registry are unconstitutional.

“In August 2016, the federal court of appeals held that Michigan’s registry is unconstitutional.” Attorney for the ACLU in Michigan, Miriam Aukerman, said.

Aukerman represents hundreds of convicted sex offenders fighting the public registry and some of the sex offender restrictions imposed by the state. That suit is in response to the state of Michigan not coming into compliance with the Court of Appeals decision.

“Basically what the court of appeals said is that the registry is so ineffective, so broken, that it violates the constitution. What we know, through research, is that registries don’t work. They don’t keep people safe.”

The Michigan registry was initially created in 1994 as a database for law enforcement. Since then, there have been major changes. In 1999, the registry was posted on the internet. In 2004, pictures were added. In 2006, living and working restrictions were imposed, keeping offenders at least 100 feet from schools. In 2011, a tier system was implemented, which determines how long an offender is on the list, retroactively extending registration for some offenders, for life, in some cases. In 2013, the state imposed an annual fee for people on the registry.

Read the full piece here at abc57.

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This topic contains 22 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by Avatar Bobby 4 days, 12 hours ago.

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  • #54957 Reply

    By Clifton French . . . Could the sex offender registry soon be a thing of the past? The American Civil Liberties Union wants to possibly get rid of i
    [See the full post at: Michigan ACLU: “The registry is broken”]

  • #54985 Reply
    Emma Greer

    The registry have ruined people lives. It created homelessness, can’t be Productive and tormented families.

    The sex offenders registry is Unconstitutional as always. This is a political thing. God shall rebuke this Nonsense.

  • #54988 Reply

    “Could the sex offender registry soon be a thing of the past?”…


    Um, no. We got a several more miles to go and quite a few wake-ups.

    I’m optimistic about Michigan (and, kudos to my birth state for some semblance of reason here) and it’s impact. Yet, until SCOTUS grows a pair and actually rules in finality – and actually bases their ruling on the fundamentals of the Constitution…it’s going to be several years still.

    • #55135 Reply

      I am a regular listener and Patreon supporter of “Registry Matters”.

      I need to repeat what Larry Neely always says in the “Registry Matters” podcast with regard to totally eliminating the sex offender registry:

      We won’t get rid of the registry altogether. There could be a constitutional registry if it was no more than mailing in a verification card yearly and coming in every 3 years to update a photo. Even if you got rid of an official public registry, there would be people who LEGALLY COULD AND WOULD use FOIA to get registrant information and post their own registry web sites. The First Amendment would protect that all day long. It’s not something any of us would support, but it is a possibility and would more than likely happen if the official registry was to be totally revamped and access was restricted to law enforcement only.

      There could be a constitutional registry if all the restrictions were stripped away from the law and if the penalties were more in line with the fines for violating any other civil regulatory scheme. The punishment for failure to register would have to be much, much, much more proportional and measured.

      I think I have it correct when I say Larry does NOT support any registry and is opposed the registry IN ANY FORM as strongly as we are. He just keeps the legal realities in view. The reality is that the registry would never go away in its entirety. States would come up with less onerous registries that can pass constitutional muster and that’s what they would do.

      The states would not just give up and say, “Oh well, we tried. We just won’t have a sex offender registry any more.”

      Larry, if I misspoke, please feel free to chime in and correct me. You do a great job with “Registry Matters” along with Andy and I would NEVER want to undermine that in any way.

      • #55729 Reply

        What the heck is the matter with you! There should have never been a registry in the first place because it is completely based on a lie and i have all the proof you need & what we need to do is take all of this information to the media n legislature and everywhere we can this is utter crap that the government themselves has done studies even before the registry and rates in 1994 shown rates at 9% and still past Megans law.

        • #57782 Reply

          Don’t forget the extended complaint is that many people are subjected to Ex Post Facto registration…and any enforcer (law enforcement agent) is violating the Constitution in these cases from the day they swear into the job of law enforcement employee and gopher of politicians.

  • #54996 Reply

    I really hope things get changed. It has hurt so many families. Me and my now husband fell in love when we were teenagers and we are still being punished for it. We are having our 5th baby and I worry for our children. We’ve been threatened and harassed because they label my husband (a good man) a monster. If things don’t change, we will always be haunted because of the list. We were young and stupid but we shouldn’t be punished for the rest of our lives. Praying for change soon. Please keep fighting for us and everyone that is harmed because of this.

  • #55178 Reply

    What wanna know is why dont the family’s of those on the registry that have been murdered by people who looked up the person on the registry and went to the address and either murdered the registrant or seriously done harm, that makes the registry directly responsible and that mean the family’s of the registrants that we’re murdered can sue for wrongful death because the meaning of wrongful death is: “A wrongful death claim is a special kind of personal injury lawsuit made when someone is killed due to another party’s negligence or intentional act. Wrongful death claims are brought against a defendant who has caused someone’s death either negligently or through intentional harm ” and how that comes into play is the government put the registry up with there addresses online and when registrants started getting murdered and severely beaten an when those murderers explained how they knew where the registrant lives they explain they went online and looked them up and got there address, once that started happening that now shifts the blame on the federal government because now they know that people are using the website to carry out murder that makes the federal government at fault because they knowingly what happens having the registry up but do nothing to correct the issue so all those families of murdered registrants need to file Wrongful Death lawsuit.

  • #55193 Reply

    Does anyone know where the Snyder vs Does cases are at?…I haven’t heard much lately. I’m one of the ex post facto cases just waiting to hear something.

  • #55200 Reply

    The concept of building databases to ” assist law enforcement ” and to ” utilize electronic means to monitor a population” was always the agenda.
    There was much in the way distrust among the general public concerning specific onerous governmental uses of electronics intended to maintain power unjustly. The child rapists made the perfect scapegoat to overcome the established public consensus that BIG BROTHER, would surely arise via the machines ability to initialize warrantless search. Another subtle extension of the machines power to centralize decision making to the powerful few who have greater access to bells and whistles.

    The worst of the regime rests in the plain indenture of humans to the people’s machine database property AND it’s “necessary maintance.”
    Man’s subservience to machine began in 1994 and humans applauded the efforts on moral high ground. The poignant picturesque history of man repeats. Again victimites insist on eating the Apple of knowledge, “we’ve the right to know!” they exclaimed but to what end?

    • #55203 Reply

      There is some merit to what you keep repeating all over this site. All the social media giants are doing exactly that, collecting data so they can sell it to corporations and bombard us with advertisements. However, you are missing the key point. It’s much simpler than you are making it out to be. It isn’t about monitoring people. It’s about making money. That is all they care about and that is the real scheme behind the registry, to make money.

      Lawmakers push for stricter registry laws in order to seal votes and make money from their corporate backers who control the private prison industry and the registry systems. Anytime someone is arrested for a registry violation, someone else makes money. That is why the registries are growing at a rapid rate, registering periods are being extended, laws making it harder to stay compliant are being enacted, and just about any trivial contact can land a person on the registry.

      • #55249 Reply

        Yes there is complicity in what economists refer to as RENT SEEKING behavior by rival interests. Rent seeking behavior by definition uses law to secure market position and derived profitability. In this case, the people lay claim to non financial gain, or “legitimate public interest” in public safety. The Rehnquist court found no record of affirmative disability in the textual intent. But all parties failed to acknowledge implicit intent in the obvious indenture itself, to property maintenance with queer and rushed federalist funding. FREE men are paid wages for this even while in prison in my state. Worse yet a larger question looms for the general public nesting in privacy concerning databases and ” person information ” or ” biometric data”. How secure is the data collection(s)?
        Not very, thus rich folks purchase identity and fraud protection as they are compelled precisely because of database infrastructure misuse. Misuse for profit expanded exponentially. The bells and whistles to attractive, like marten to feathered snare. The issue here is speech itself. Registration IS compelled speech as is IML. IML protects by intent foreign nationals on their own soil (emphasis), an all too familiar refrain in modern American politics. Screw ourselves to save others. Attn! Wal-Mart shoppers. HAGO

  • #55623 Reply

    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again is why are we battling the little battle all the information (azp

    mmo) is out the and it is on the federal government website i have found and have information proving the government knew and still knows the truth, the reason they said they enacted sorna is extremely high recidivism rate (supposedly 80%) which the government had done several studies and one of them they did in 1994 shows recidivism rate is 9% and every study they have done since then shows recidivism rate is below 5% and this is before they enacted sorna or Megans law? Thats fraud no if and or buts, i have more information that comes directly from the federal government, instead of trying to take the registry down 1 brick at a time lets knock it down like the Berlin wall. Go and look up and find or you can ask me for it but i believe if you find the information it will not look biased because if you copy it directly from there website and it matches word for word thats powerful! Then we need to make copies and get all this information out to the media and everywhere we can, I’ve had people on here tell me that the government already knows all this but don’t change it, what?? Just because someone on here tells me the government knows all of this im still not giving up, i have another bit of information that will blow you away: In 1945, George W. Bush married Barbara Pierce. She was 16 years old and he was 21. That is considered a sex offender on today’s law so George W. Bush could and should have been put on Sex Offender Registry, if he was still alive he could and should have been made to register as Sex Offender and they have made everyone who committed a sex offence before megans law have been made to retroactively register, and i was told well that was leagal in Texas but what is a 21yr old doing looking at and dating and having sex with a 16yr old? I have many facts more damaging than that! Lets all get united and gather all of this information and blast it to the media and send it to all the the judges and everywhere we can, “United We Stand but Devided We Fall”!

    • #56012 Reply

      @mike, you bring up good points, also another person that should be on the Registry is John Walsh himself, he was 23 when he was dating Reve his then girlfriend when she was 16 a 7 year difference. The he comes up with Tye Adam Walsh Act. (AWA) when his son Adam Walsh was murdered. The thing is Adam was murdered not sexually assaulted, even the guy who murdered Adam said he didn’t sexually assault Adam he just killed him, plus Adams head was the only thing recovered, so who knows what really took place. Just like Weiner guy, Walsh needs to be on the registry as well.

  • #57027 Reply

    Welp, show’s over. Supreme court made its decision. Ex Post Facto is dead. We lost a big battle this day.

    • #57029 Reply

      What are you talking about? I have been following the cases before Michigan’s Supreme Court and I see nothing about them deciding it today. Are you referring to the Gundy case that the U.S. Supreme Court ruled on today? That was not on Ex Post Facto.

      • #57093 Reply

        @Fred, other then the Michigan Legislature has until August 21st to revise Michigan’s Registry. Have you by chance heard anything on the progress if any? to being any closer to finally revising it and removing people from the registry that are pre-sorna such as my self. I now have been on it for 27 years. My 27 years was 6-19-19. My conviction was 6-19-1992. That was before their was even a registry in Michigan. I was put on it for 25 years then it changed to life. So now that they have to revise the registry I should be removed since I’m 2 years over my original 25 years. Does that sound about right to you? Thanks for your time.

        • #57095 Reply

          I haven’t heard anything about Does v. Snyder other than negotiations between ACLU and Michigan’s Legislature are going better than expected. I do not expect the legislature to make any changes though. It would be easier to let the judge decide for them.
          I am more optimistic about a shorter wait on the outcomes of Michigan v. David Snyder and The People v. Betts. Both of these cases are before Michigan’s Supreme Court. Oral arguments are over and we are just waiting for the court to decide, which might be before the end of July if they stick to their traditional practice of deciding pending cases before the term ends. These cases are on very similar grounds as Does v. Gov. Rick Snyder and the ruling will be binding.

          Be the first to know when an opinion has been released by following this site. Expand the listing for 18-19 Term

          Read what People v. Betts is about.

        • #57108 Reply


          I got these in my email box yesterday would you please explain what these mean and what the Michigan Supreme’s actually said. http://publicdocs.courts.mi.gov/SCT/PUBLIC/ORDERS/153696_89_01.pdf http://publicdocs.courts.mi.gov/SCT/PUBLIC/ORDERS/148981_45_01.pdf http://publicdocs.courts.mi.gov/SCT/PUBLIC/ORDERS/148981_46_01.pdf

        • #57113 Reply

          That is an Order on the Michigan v. Snyder case.
          They are putting a hold on the Snyder case until they decide the Betts case, because the Betts case raises the same or similar questions and they may apply the same ruling to both cases.
          Michigan’s new attorney general submitted the same brief for both of these cases and oral arguments were heard on the same day. My impression is that the court is basically combining them and will rule on both at the same time.

  • #57974 Reply

    Hello Everyone, I was just wondering if anyone has heard, when the July 8th Conference call concerning updates and news on Does v Snyder is suppose to be released the recording of the conference call just to be clear.its been 4 days and i still can’t find anything on it. Thank you in advance.

    • #57984 Reply

      There was no NARSOL conference call on July 8. We had a conference call last night, but it did not cover this issue. I believe you might be referring to something scheduled by our Michigan affiliate.

      • #57986 Reply


        yes, Sorry for the confusion I got email notices, from WAR and MCFJ, on news and updates on Does v Snyder, the call was by Shelli Weisberg Legislative Director for the Michigan ACLU, so I was just wondering if anyone on here would know when the recording of that conference call would be posted and if it would even be posted here, I am checking other sites as well. So any info on this that you might have would be appreciated. Thank you

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