Colorado Supreme Court allows man to stop registering

By Michael Karlik . . . 

In a 4-3 decision, the Colorado Supreme Court has ruled that a criminal defendant was entitled to his request to de-register as a sex offender because he completed the terms of his probationary sentence and therefore no longer had a conviction under the law.

A district court agreed with the prosecution, claiming that the “legislative intent” of the law was to bar even those with deferred sentences from de-registering in the state’s offender tracking system. The Colorado Court of Appeals also reached the same conclusion.

Justice Justice Monica M. Márquez, writing for the Supreme Court’s majority, explained that cases of deferred judgment are treated as a “conviction” while the defendant completes his probation, even though the court has postponed officially recording it as such. However, once he completes the terms of his sentence, he is no longer “convicted.”

Márquez pointed out that Colorado’s SORA prohibits those who “received a deferred judgment and sentence” from de-registering. The missing piece, she wrote, was that the law “does not expressly address successfully completed deferred judgments and sentences.”

Likewise, Márquez agreed that someone who “has” more than one conviction per the law is not identical to someone who “received” more than one conviction, regardless of what happened subsequent to that conviction. Under the prosecutors’ logic, she argued, anyone whose conviction was reversed on appeal might be precluded from de-registering because they technically received a conviction at some point.

The case is Brian Keith McCulley v. The People of the State of Colorado.

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    • #72672 Reply
      Old Offender

      Hopefully ALL who complete their sentence will be free from the registry.

    • #72714 Reply

      At least it’s Progress for him. Now, does this mean that later on, there MAY be an even greater Urgency to eradicate The Registry altogether? Well, this remains to be seen.

    • #73085 Reply
      Tim in WI

      I hope he moves to file a federal tort case against CO.
      The presumption of a party of 1 is not enough enlightenment to justify his inclusion day 1. You know damn well his file was copied by profiteers. He should hold the government officials responsible. I’ll bet it was done before he knew it.

      This case sure makes the case that prosecutors get to have their cake and eat it too.

    • #73254 Reply

      Does this affect Federal cases? I know of a person who was sentenced, served time, completed 3 years of supervised release and finished it The sex offender therapy ended when his supervised release ended. Stuck around for a year and left the country. So the question is because of this decision will this end the majority of people on Colorado’s registry automatically or do the people on the list have to file motions to deregister? What if people have a warrant for them for failure to register…does the decision quash all warrants?

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