In the state of Virginia sex offenders are required to register with the sex offender registry by both Federal and Virginia law While on the sex offender registry, the offender’s freedom may be limited as to where and when he/she can move, the places he/she may go, and even what he/she may do without first notifying law enforcement. Failure to obey these strict laws will only result in more convictions for the offender.
Virginia law outlines certain offenses which require sex offender registration. Offenses on the registration requirement list include:
- Object Sexual Penetration
- Sexual battery, Aggravated Sexual Battery
- Rape, Attempted Rape
- Forcible Sodomy
- Production and/or distribution of child pornography
- Solicitation of a minor
THE ADAM WALSH ACT
If an offender has been convicted of a federal sex crime, he/she required to register in all jurisdictions where he/she works, live, and attend school.
The Adam Walsh Act sets forth the Federal Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (“SORNA”). Under the act, there are three tiers of registration:
- Tier I – Registration required for 15 years, with the chance of removal from the registry after 10 years
- Tier II – Registration required for 25 years, with no chance for early removal
- Tier III – Registration required for life. If the offender was convicted as a juvenile, he/she may seek removal from the registry after 25 years. If the offender was convicted as an adult, he/she cannot be removed from the registry.
Penalties of Failing to Register
If the offender fails to register or provide false information during registration, he/she is guilty of a class one misdemeanor under Virginia law for a first offense if he/she was originally convicted of a non-violent sex offense. The usual penalty may include up to one year in jail and a fine of up to $2,500.00.
If the offender fails to register or provides false information and was originally convicted of murder or a violent sex offense, he/she is guilty of a class six felony. Subsequent offenses are a class five felony, which may result in punishments which include one to ten years in prison and a fine of up to $2,500.00. If an offender is charged with failure to register as a sex offender, his/her rights can be seriously affected.
Removing the offender’s name from the registry
The state of Virginia allows for some non-violent sex offenders to remove their names from the registry after a period of fifteen years. To petition for removal, the offender must:
- Complete all court-demanded counseling and treatment;
- Pay all court-ordered restitution;
- Demonstrate that he/she no longer pose a risk to society.
If the offender has been convicted of a sexually violent offense, murder, or was convicted of two or more offenses then he/she is not eligible to have his/her name removed from the registry. Depending on the circumstances of the offender’s case, he/she may be permitted to petition the court for less frequent registration requirements.
If you need a Virginia Sex Offender Lawyer to help you with your Sex Offender case in Virginia, call us at 888-437-7747. Our Virginia Sex Offender Attorneys can help you.