Parts of Michigan Sex Offender Law Deemed Unconstitutional
Michigan’s Sex Offender Registry law establishes clear guidelines for convicted sex offenders on where they can live, where they can work, and where they are allowed to travel. However, it appears that portions of the law have been ruled unconstitutional by a U.S. District Court Judge, citing issues with enforcing such guidelines and noting that certain ambiguities make it difficult for offenders to reasonably comply.
For example, the 1,000-foot school safety zone, which demands that sex offenders remain at least 1,000 feet from schools, leaves offenders wondering exactly where the safety zone begins and ends. In this case, the state of Michigan does not provide enough information to offenders to enable them to actually follow the restriction; thus, enforcing rules for sex offenders to avoid future infractions becomes difficult.
Other requirements struck down include a rule demanding offenders to report in person with any new email or instant messaging accounts along with any and all phone numbers they may use. According to the District Court, the law is so vague it leaves too much grey area for registrants to determine if they have adequately followed the law, and provides no guidance to law enforcement on how to deploy the law. Essentially, the judge ruled that many of the provisions of Michigan’s Sex Offender Registry law are too complex and convoluted for a reasonably intelligent offender to interpret without further guidance.
The Peter J. Johnson Law Office, PLLC, has years of experience fighting for the rights of sex offenders and ensuring they’re treated fairly by the law. Rulings like this show that when it comes to those on the offenders list, the state isn’t very concerned with protecting constitutional rights. Working with an experienced and reputable sex offender attorney in Berrien County is a powerful step in ensuring your rights remain protected. For further information or to schedule an appointment please contact us at 269.982.1100 or visit www.AttorneyPeterJohnson.com.