Consider yourself served!

By Sandy . . . From Aurora, Illinois comes good news: Thanks to litigation filed, the city is backing off its threat to force nineteen registrants to leave Wayside Cross Ministries. Furthermore, a federal judge has ordered the men be registered as living at Wayside.

Even though the city insists that the actual threat of the registrants having to leave the ministry comes from the State Attorney’s office, the suit maintains that the impetus for the situation originated with the city of Aurora, and they have responded to the suit by saying they will not take action.

The Wayside Cross/distance restrictions suit is one of several filed in Illinois by NARSOL affiliate Illinois Voices’ attorneys Nicholas and Weinstein. Growing out of the Wayside case is one challenging the way the state defines a playground as opposed to a park for the purposes of establishing restricted living areas for registrants. Others still pending are cases involving presence and residency restrictions, mandatory supervised release which can keep a person in prison indefinitely, prohibiting contact with one’s own minor children, internet restrictions, and prohibiting a name change. Other registry-related suits have been filed independent of Illinois Voices. Illinois appears to be one of if not the most prolific state in challenging the registry and sexual offense related issues.

Each year sees a marked increase in litigation that challenges the registry, its scope and outreach, and its effect in the lives of everyone it touches. NARSOL and its affiliates are involved in a significant number of these cases, and we welcome cases being brought against the registry in all states.

The oldest pending NARSOL-involved case is a residency restrictions case in Rhode Island. The statute being challenged is especially onerous as it would be applied retroactively and remove registrants from the homes where they have lived prior to the statute being enacted. The plaintiffs’ attorneys sought and were granted from the outset a restraining order which will remain in place until the case is resolved. Initiated in 2015, this case has stalled due to the state’s handling of discovery, which is fine with NARSOL as long as no registrants are forced from their homes in the interim.

Another case (2017) that has been pending for a while in the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals due to the plaintiffs submitting supplemental authorities is a case in Colorado challenging the registry on the basis of ex post facto and cruel and unusual in regard to enhanced restrictions. NARSOL submitted an amicus in support of the plaintiffs.

In North Carolina NARSOL has three active cases filed by NARSOL’s attorney Paul Dubbeling. Two of the cases are ex-post facto challenges, and the third is a premises restrictions case. North Carolina is notable in the sexual offense litigation arena for taking the Packingham case to the U.S. Supreme Court and winning.

Texas has an active case filed by NARSOL affiliate Texas Voices and attorney Richard Gladden. This case claims the registry as it is applied in Texas violates the Substantive Due Process Clause of the U.S. Constitution as interpreted by the U.S. Supreme Court in Santobello v. New York, 404 U.S. 257 (1971).

One of the most critical current cases is in Tennessee in response to legislation that stripped the rights of parents convicted of certain sexual crimes to live with and parent their own children. The legislation is applied indiscriminately to anyone with a conviction against a child under twelve regardless of how long ago, the age of the registrant at the time, the victim not being related to or living with the registrant, or the needs of the registrant’s children. As in Rhode Island, a restraining order is in place and will remain so until the resolution of the case.

Georgia is another battleground state for NARSOL-initiated litigation. We are bringing suit against the sheriffs of two counties there for requiring signage be placed on registrants’ homes (Spalding County) or in their yards (Butts County) for Halloween in the absence of any statute authorizing this. A victory was won in Georgia earlier this year when the Georgia Supreme Court struck down a law requiring those who are classified as “dangerous sexual predators” who have completed their sentences to wear electronic monitors for the rest of their lives. 

A new case just filed in Missouri seems promising as some of the plaintiffs are the children of registrants who have suffered due to their parents’ inclusion on the registry. The basis for the suit is that the registry is unconstitutionally cruel.

And while not sexual offense specific but certainly applicable, in Florida two suits have been filed against the correctional system. In one, a First Amendment violation in regard to prison circulation restrictions on printed materials, NARSOL has submitted an amicus. In the other, the Florida Correctional System is being sued in regard to their solitary confinement practices.

Litigation in Michigan – two cases – drew attention from all over the country earlier this year when Attorney General Dana Nessel submitted amicus briefs in support of the cases and the claim that Michigan’s sexual offense registry as it is applied in some cases is punishment and in violation of constitutional protection. These suits were brought by the ACLU there working with NARSOL’s affiliate organization CUR.

Pennsylvania appears to be as prolific as Illinois in registry-related suits. NARSOL’s affiliate there, PARSOL, reports following a total of twenty cases that are currently in the appeal process, some already scheduled to be heard by the PA Supreme Court (PASC).  Most of these challenge the constitutionality of SORNA II (the “legislative fix” that was adopted after the PASC opinion that SORNA I was unconstitutional).  Others challenge the constitutionality of having to disclose computer passwords, sharing information from mandated group treatment with the SOAB without a waiver from the client to do so, and SVP designation.  PARSOL submitted an amicus brief for one of the cases challenging SORNA II.

In New Mexico no suits have been filed yet, but one is pending – due process for registrants with out-of-state convictions moving into New Mexico – and several others are being planned.

California, which has had  success there with suits from ACSOL regarding residency restrictions and Halloween restrictions, continues, under ACSOL, to bring residency restrictions suits where needed.

There are almost certainly other cases of which I am unaware. Our biggest successes thus far have been in the legal arena, and fighting for the constitutional and human rights of those with sexual crime convictions is rewarding, challenging, and expensive.

However, as long as there is a wisp of breath in our bodies, a drop of blood in our veins, and a dollar in our bank accounts, we will continue to fight.

Help us reach more people by Sharing or Liking this post.

Sandy Rozek

Sandy is communications director for NARSOL, editor-in-chief of the Digest, and a writer for the Digest and the NARSOL website. Additionally, she participates in updating and managing the website and assisting with a variety of organizational tasks.

Viewing 23 reply threads
  • Author
    • #58497 Reply
      John Bacon

      THANK YOU for trying to help those of us who made these mistakes in life and have tried to become productive citizens. I committed my sex offense when I was 18 in a drug and alcohol induced state. ONE MISTAKE!!! And God KNOW how SORRY I am for hurting another human being!! I spent 15 years in prison for it and have NEVER reoffended! By trade I’m a plumber but they won’t let me get a license for it due to the laws. So it’s almost impossible to get work. I HOPE one day they will drop this registry craziness (because no other crime has one!) . I DID live in Alaska once where I don’t have to register (age of crime, it was before 1994). Any news on us in Georgia GETTING OFF the registry? I’m a level 2 offender. Again THANK YOU and hopefully people will see this “political game” is all for NOTHING!

    • #58498 Reply

      When I lived in Aurora I was harassed by the police nearly every day, coming to the place I lived and making a spectacle every time they came. Every time I had to register they had me wait for about 3 hours or more, knowing this I had to have an open day. The police always told me that they would do this until I left Aurora, I did leave and I will never go back. I HATE that town with every fiber of my being, Aurora police are absolutely corrupt

    • #58500 Reply
      James D. Smith

      How can some of these Counties in The State off Georgia make there on rules, for example , in Jasper County, Ga ( Deputy Earl Favors in charge ) they want you to report to the County Jail on Halloween night to a room. My complaint was ,i was not on any type of probation or parole, but they said i had to report anyway if i was on the Registry. I am off the registry now with the help of an Attorney. I did all i was suppose to do, but they want blood. Sincerely James D.Smith.Thank you for reading.

      • #58506 Reply
        Sandy Rozek
        Sandy Rozek

        Being confined somewhere on Halloween, while ridiculous, is permissible for those on community supervision, but for those who are not, it it highly, highly questionable. We are glad you were successful in being removed from the registry. As Halloween approaches this year, if you have first hand knowledge of someone who is NOT on probation, parole, or any supervision but IS on the registry being required to report to the jail or any other compelled confinement, ask the person to contact NARSOL as soon as possible after being notified of the forced confinement. Thank you. This applies to anyone in any state.

    • #58508 Reply

      Thank you for sharing all this information. It is encouraging and gives reason why to keep on fighting even when a hit is taken now and then.

    • #58517 Reply

      Can anyone post links to the three cases from North Carolina? Thanks

    • #58520 Reply

      NARSOL is one last bastion of human defense against database madness.
      You folks really are defending humanity itself. What more egregious afront to individual liberty than to opt to indenture humans to database and their maintenance for life. Free men are paid to maintain machine or do so by volition. Some would prefer the inverse and have gotten their way from the beginning but at what untold cost to the nation of free men, women and children. Only the clearest proof would suffice to overcome expresses congressional intent. well then?? How clear must it be?
      The is serious error in opting for one manifest evil to combat another manifest evil. To fight fire with fire burns all eventually and a nation’s reputation and dignity with it. What farmer advertises the least of his flock?

      Stay strong!

    • #58524 Reply
      Kelly Reynolds

      The registry is the most inhumane thing I have ever seen! You can be prosecuted for hate crimes yet they set up all the people on the registry to be hated- absolutely does not make sense!! STOP this nonsense as everyone has a story and it’s no ones place to judge. Rural town in Nevada was ruthless to my Son and when he finally gets to come home this November I would love to tell someone that will listen how made their own rules! Thanks for listening

      • #58536 Reply

        Hi Kelly, Your hit upon the key word…”inhumane.” The process of dehumanizing a group so that it can become a scapegoat for public scorn and transference of collective guilt is a long established method of gather power. The Nazis did it well last century, and we (mostly) remember this as evil and something worthy of a tremendous effort to defeat such evil. We (unfortunately) have a history in the US as well, towards the Indians, then Africans, and Japanese, now persons convicted of a sexually defined offense. It seems humankind has this innate desire to “other” some group to force them into “less-than” status, and then flex the collective power thus derived. Its an evil that can be traced back to the beginning of recorded history. These trends can only be broken when there is a big enough push back from the ‘healthy-thinking” population that sees hate for what it really is. I myself was lifted greatly this morning when I awoke to see that NARSOL, through Sandy, listed out the major fights going on throughout the US. There is a lot to do, but this wave of defense is key to our hoped for restoration. Charlie

        • #58551 Reply

          All the manifest inhumanity rests squarely in the regime’s notion of man’s subservient disposition to the big government database. Any alternate constitutional question misses the heart. The regime in question renders or works anti-liberty.
          MN>HN~null. (Asimov)

          Big firm market capitalists always prefer BIG K (automated machine) over labor in the long run! Free men are ALWAYS paid wages to perform machine maintenance. Some prefer the inverse and have it in registrants!
          Other big gov USES are in the news every day mostly just under the surface.

          I will make this case before a jury of my peers by volition this year in FTR, Rock County WI, Janesville, 7th cir. Next court date Aug 1. While the ground rule parameters for trial have yet to be determined, states touchstone was always a wrongful conviction and I can prove it. Or at least cast doubt enough. The 1991 touchstone is also marked with a plea of not guilty.

          • #58740 Reply

            Tim, I am from Wisconsin, I am curious how your court date went.

            Or if you could provide a case number that I can follow? I’d appreciate it…

          • #58743 Reply

            Next court date Sept 5, 51 S. Main street, Janesville, WI. Courtroom B on 3rd floor. 9am. Judge agreed in theory to pro we(se) defense. He’s typically sceptical, but I’ll be filing motions for discovery. A certain former AG should be concerned. Re: Norma Grace Constanteneau 400 US 430.

            as for case #, not sharing that on this forum.

    • #58526 Reply
      Joseph Eigenmann

      Was released in 1995.maxed out juvenile sentence.been registering of not doing it anymore..let them arrest me..any good lawyers out there..10 months to go..will not register after my 25yrs are taking a stand and saying enough is enough…wish me luck

      • #58552 Reply

        Good brother! I’m with you, done it twice myself. You’ll find it cathartic.
        Use the original ” notice of conviction ” against the state. You know it says nothing useful to them outside of the statute # you were convicted of. Bring the clerk of courts to the stand and ask what the purpose of their official stamp is. Why it’s dated and so forth. That is what makes a sentence commitment ” lawful” at least in part. It also suffices to administrator delivery to custody by the sheriff. Without it (Calder v Bull #4) laws that great less evidence than before.

    • #58528 Reply
      Former Offender

      Yet the big one not mentioned and virtually ignored is International Megan’s Law. Once ANY person on a sex offender registry has to get their passport renewed they will have a target on their back. In March of 2021 the target will be on me and may cost me my entire life. You guys may not like me continuing to mention the lack of progress on this, but I will continue to. For NARSOL to advocate against every other sex offender law other than this one is a tragedy. People’s lives are in danger. It’s not just about the freedom to travel, it’s about protecting those of us who have a life overseas in which the US Government is seeking to destroy. Mark my words the end is near for those of us who are overseas. When the altered passports are issued we will be deported by our host country and lose anything we have. Ignore this and many of us will suffer.

      • #58556 Reply
        Sandy Rozek
        Sandy Rozek

        There have been, to our knowledge, two IML cases filed, and both were dismissed due to not yet being “ripe.” This means that harm to the plaintiffs had not yet occurred. These suits are all civil suits. A valid claim is dependent on a plaintiff having suffered harm due to the conditions being protested in the suit. If you have first hand knowledge of a person who has come to harm or suffered loss due to something inherent in IML, and it is a person willing to file a suit with a claim of harm or loss and able to retain an attorney who is willing to represent him, please have the person or the attorney contact NARSOL.

        You cannot criticize NARSOL for not filing an IML suit. No plaintiff has presented himself with proof of harm due to IML. No one on the NARSOL board has suffered such harm. We cannot create a plaintiff out of thin air. It is a shame that someone has to suffer before a claim can be made, but that is the way the system is structured.

        We feel confident that there will be, in the right time, challenges to IML.

        • #58573 Reply

          Yes two challenge were filed but they each aimed their arrows at the wrong target. Only fools rush in. The same can be said for the DOE03 cases – wrong target.
          The claim is states intent is unassailable is a fallacy and just what proponents want the focus on. Congress blatantly adopted a ex post facto law- plain and simple. That SCOTUS upheld the ex post by denial of ill intent behind the electronic regulatory regime was far more about deep state desires for other potential uses of the database machine to maintain political security for the corrupted parties.

    • #58529 Reply

      The registry was created to prevent sex offenders from working at schools and daycare centers. I am a sex offender thirty five years ago and agree that there should be a data base that throws a flag if an convicted sex offender is to apply. Here’s where the whole logical system fell apart. ” If It Isn’t Broken Our Government Will Fix It Until Its REALLY BROKEN!” The registry has been taken over by the Pathetic Ignorant law makers, group leaders, court justices, detectives, and politicians that are trying to show off their so called “Courage” and abusive power in an cowardly attempt to per sway the miss informed public to agree with their hatred and become a “Hero”. A scared and miss informed population is a guarantee to support the fake “Hero” and possibly reelect the fake Hero. Look at the history of the USA. A History of Hatred and Bulling designed to promote the existence of fear so the people will follow the fear and hate and help their False Heros to help them feel safe from a danger that has been exploited for the profits of the courts and government. Thus the new Sex Offender Registry in true usa form. As well as the Indian Reservations. Sure we can trust the government, Just ask an Indian!

      • #58648 Reply

        Take a good look at HR5533(OMNIBUS94). You will find it is a completely different act that developed the background check for felons in daycares ( fed and state sanctioned) child care service provider’s. The Whetterling act which was first promulgated to the states was the seed for the modern registry. (WI:Act 98, 1993 created 175.45) No one can argue against background checks for employment. One may however dispute the use of the words ” a person who was in prison for…. ” Thus SCOTUS was compelled to certify the question as appropriate to grant writ of certiorari in ex post review.

    • #58543 Reply

      Tim is right in some respect of this bordering on a humanistic view. Its like an air raid of caustion without respect. Protesting is one way to call attention to something like human rights. Less attention is better in many situations and given the public view of sex registries in different area’s. A lot of this sounds good for prevention but discrimination is discrimination in any type of situation. Talk about a state being a tricky coercive monopoly. Sure people want justice over this sex registry injustice. I’m sure many don’t like war but if problems can be solved by true Justice and better standards than that is a good goal. Take a hint from “The rascals” People got to be free.

      Registrys are more a hinderance than the punishment that it covers up. Their are a whole lot of factors involved.
      Sure TV talk show’s are good about addressing issues. If one can hit up a good newspaper to get some action than that is good coverage, Government inducing by this internet ordeal to enslaves by this fradulent means is an abuse of liberty. People are being abused or being accused by unfair tactics. This is not true justice. Watered down justice is a shady principal. True Justice is either for one or for all. This sex registry shine’s a light on many principals in American Justice that seemed to have its bias in the Civil War and earlier. Yes strike while the anvil’s hot for true liberty for mankind.

      They say the people rejoice when true justice previal’s but one still has a long ways to go. Yes people and government will back down when law suit threatens their liverlyhood. To have authority one also has to have a responsiblity thats not bias. I’m sure everyone is responsible for their own actions but when actions are inducement by this void type of alternate inducement than this adultrated justice becomes injustice to protect and serve in the mind of man in this internet fricus. Its a bit uncanny in true American Government and can take on a macabe governmental nature. Government has alway wanted to shift blame on others. Still we have injustice going on today. Hitler was no boy scout.

      Cleaning up government and stopping abusive injustice should be the norm for the people and the sex registry makes a statement even with many discriminations going on today.

    • #58540 Reply

      Thank you so much, Sandy and all on the NARSOL board, for all you do to fight legally for those with sexual offenses! Thanks for doing all you can to make their lives, and those of their loved ones, better. Your work is so greatly appreciated! (Also, as a professional writer, I really appreciate your written communication skills and expressive ability. It’s a pleasure reading your articles.)

      • #58557 Reply
        Sandy Rozek
        Sandy Rozek

        Thank you; that is very kind of you.

    • #58541 Reply

      @Sandy, Robin, et al

      Keep up the good fight!

    • #58538 Reply

      TN has a 1000 ft buffer zone for registrants from schools, daycare, playgrounds, softball fields, parks and “greenways”.
      Greenways are nothing more than walking/bicycle paths that in parts of Knoxville and other major cities, run through almost the entire city. Restaurants, retail shops and other places where registrants might be able to find employment automatically become places where they can’t work because there is a greenway nearby. As cities like Knoxville continue to set aside more and more areas and designate them as greenways, registrants will continue to loose more and more options for living and working. Perhaps something for NARSOL to look in to.

    • #58537 Reply

      Keep in mind this litigation is only possibly through thousands of doner’s. It takes 10’s of thousands a year per state to support litigation. Make sure you are donating what you can to NARSOL and your local affiliate. If you are only here to complain you are not part of the solution. Be a part of the solution any way you can.

    • #58553 Reply

      Has NARSOL ever had any legal fights in the Ohio courts?

      • #58561 Reply
        Sandy Rozek
        Sandy Rozek

        No, I do not believe so.

      • #58574 Reply

        Ohio registrants have petitioned challenges and have had some success fighting registration. A Mr. Williamson of Ohio had a positive outcome.

      • #58609 Reply
        Sandy Rozek
        Sandy Rozek

        Thank you, Lloyd. Readers, be sure you understand that not every case mentioned in my article is one in which NARSOL has involvement. I tried my very best to make it clear when NARSOL was involved in the case. If we were not, I made every effort to make clear who was, and if I simply could not determine that, I said nothing about that aspect. My overall motivation with this piece was to show how much litigation there was nationally challenging the registry and its harm. We are proud and pleased to be involved with some of the cases. We are totally delighted that several of our state affiliates are involved with some of the cases. And we are absolutely thrilled that cases are being filed of this nature regardless of who has filed them or who is supporting them.

    • #58563 Reply

      Sandy thank you for keeping us updated. I am so thankful that the 19 men were able to keep their housing. I will pray that the men in Tennesee will not be separated from their families. The more we learn the better we can fight this!

    • #58567 Reply

      One cannot bring back American again without true justice and values which was one of my sentences to the President in my letter to him. One wonders whatever happened to the days of filbusters in legislature. Sure we are always going to have drunk drivers and other forms of behavior, even family member disagreements but understanding is a process.

      Sure its sad that kids today can get into trouble or be intimidated by others but rules are rules if they are not painted black and I liked the stone’s also. Who can put a value on true justice today in this jay walking misadventure of a third party internet machine that separate’s this muddy water ordeal. Even Larry on Andy on the Radio talk show said, its great to be alive but handicapping justice is a bit overshaddowed in all this ordeal of true justice.

      I use to watch boxing fights in the 60’s with dad and asked what a referee does and he told me that he is the one that makes sure the fight is fair. I wonder who does an under cut or uper cut to dignity today with a lot of this going on.Throwing in the towel is not good for any true justice.

    • #58602 Reply

      NARSOL should provide a short manual on how to start suing. Some illustrated, clear, easy steps to follow. Distributed via PDF, email, and mailers.

      NARSOL can then offer a service to help registrants get started on their case by preparing filled forms, making calls, and further instruction for a small fee that registrants can afford.

      • #58659 Reply

        This is a great idea! Money talks and BS walks. Threaten to sue the states when they cross the line. Taxpayers might not care about sex offenders but they sure do care about their money. Also, such a program would help fund NARSOL. Also, it may not be common knowledge to all wrongfully convicted of sex crimes that there is another avenue to achieve innocents again. If it was your lawyer’s fault or you have new evidence to support your case see a lawyer about post-conviction relief.

    • #58601 Reply

      Glad to see another victory good job NARSOL!

    • #58620 Reply

      Thank you Sandy for you response and for that great work you do. Tim I thank you also for responding. I didnt now if Narsol ever had any irons in the here.

    • #58661 Reply

      Sandy, I’m wondering if more slaves of the 50 states and their families file with the courts like the 25 in Missouri did, if it would shake the courts up enough to cause them to look a little closer at this ridiculous registry and what its actually doing to us and our families. 25 can start the war but 900,000 plus their families could win the battle. ?..

    • #58662 Reply

      I pray daily that we will live to see the sex offender registry abolished. I hate these laws, and all it is a product of the devil. I hate that we cannot travel internationally. I hate it I hate it and I will continue to fight.

    • #59117 Reply

      The best thing to do with copycatting the MO lawsuit filed by the children and families of registrants would be to wait the case out. See how the courts rule and why, so if they lose, lawyers can adjust their legal arguments accordingly. No need to rush head-long into a similar suit with similar arguments that will only get shot down in the end. Once a court hears an argument, no matter how poorly it was framed, they will be reluctant to take up the same issue again, so it’s best to study the strategy out completely..which means wait to see which way the wind blows with this initial MO lawsuit.

      In the meantime, keep up closely with what bills are being submitted that relate to sex offender legislation. Be present at your legislative hearings and committee meetings. It is easier to derail the train in committee than when it is nearing the station (out of committee for final vote). There’s a little less public visibility in committee discussions, so a well-spoken advocate for our side might be able to derail a law there If a bill makes it out of committee, then all the politicians will have to vote in favor of it. Otherwise, their opponents next election cycle will weaponize their NO vote on ANY SEX OFFENDER LEGISLATION as attack points. So, we have to become more involved with our legislatures and be heard in committee. We need to learn how to derail these trains long before they reach the station.

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