As a retired Police Officer in Colorado I can tell you in this day and age of Amber Alerts and DNA the registry is not used. It solely exists for punishment and a tool for wanna be vigilantes and snooty, bored housewives to harass people. When the registry first started there were only 8 federal offenses that would add someone to it. Now it numbers over 40. Add in state laws it is well over a hundred in many states. As an example of how stupid it is I will give three examples of people that I had to visit while on patrol in order to update their SOR. No names will be listed for obvious reasons.
Subject #1 – 10 yr male (Yes I said 10) was at a sleep over at a 9 yr old male friends house. Mother of 9 yr old male walked into the bathroom and both boys were naked laughing and poking at each other’s privates. Instead of being a parent and telling them to knock it off, she calls the police. 10 yr old child charged and forced to register on the sex offender registry.
Subject#2 – 18 yr old female high school cheerleader. After a homecoming game that her school won she boarded the bus with the rest of the students to return to their school as they were on the visitor team. 18 yr old sees opposing side’s cheerleaders outside the bus. She lowers the window, pulls down her underwear and “moons” them. Charged and registered as a sex offender.
Subject#3 – 23 yr old male at a college party. He is intoxicated. As a joke he “short drops” a male friend of his exposing his buttocks. 23 yr old is charged and registered as a sex offender.
I could go on and on. As a final note ponder this….The US also has another registry…The “terrorist watchlist” yet this list isn’t made public. Why? Because the government has opined that if these individual’s photos and addresses were released, vigilantes would target them. Yet they don’t feel the same about SORs? The government says it is not punishment and they don’t encourage vigilantes….yea right, this a tongue and cheek example of what you find on the Colorado registry:
“This person is dangerous and may target your children” (imagine the “dangerous” people I listed earlier)
“Here are his identifiers (Ht, Wt, tattoos, ect)
“This is his employers address and phone number”
“This is a description of his vehicles and license plate numbers”
“This is his recent photo” which is taken every year, or 4 times a year depending on the offense
“This is his address”
“And just for your convenience we have linked our site to google maps so you can get turn by turn directions to his residence”
“We don’t condone harassing or victimizing this individual but take all steps necessary to defend your wife and children from this out of control dangerous monster.”