In recent years there has been a big push towards recognizing the rights of the accused and convicted. Whether the issue is rising wrongful conviction rates, terrible prison food, sexual assaults of minors, or minors who are treated like adults, the abuse of convicted people seems to cover a lot of ground. But when it comes to the rights of convicted sex offenders, the public can be less compassionate. Why is that? And is it fair?
Sex offenders have fewer rights than other convicted criminals
Here in Michigan, the way we regulate and oversee sex offenders after their release from prison resembles some sort of Orwellian fantasy. Unlike people convicted of other crimes, like Assault, Armed Robbery and Fraud, people who’ve been convicted of sex crimes have very little privacy in their “free” life after release, and very few rights. Don’t misunderstand us; we’re not ignoring that sex assault is a heinous crime. But murder and torture are pretty heinous too. Let’s take a look…
As a parent:
Parenting is challenging for everyone, but it can be can be extremely difficult for convicted sex offenders (even if your crime didn’t involve children, or even sex, in any way!) There are so many restrictions courtesy of the Michigan Sex Offender Registry, and societal issues that make being an involved parent that much harder. These include:
- Because sex offenders are considered untrustworthy, violent people, it will be very hard for your kid to host playdates or parties at your home – no other parents would want their kids playing at your house!
- Registered sex offender still on parole or probation in Michigan are forbidden from participating in Halloween traditions that bring them into contact with children, like handing out candy to trick-or-treaters, or going trick-or-treating themselves with their own children.
- Most school districts run background checks before allowing parents to volunteer for school functions, or attend field trips. Because of your sex offender status, you won’t be allowed to help out at your child’s school, or ever go on field trips with them.
- The law forbids you to live, work, or ‘loiter’ within 1,000 feet of a school. So that house that’s walking distance from your child’s school that you can afford? Nope. You can’t live there. Sorry.
- You won’t be able to take jobs or volunteer positions that bring you into contact with kids. So if you were hoping to coach your kid’s little league team, become a Girl Scout or Boy Scout leader, or even work at a daycare so you can earn money and save on childcare at the same time, you’ll be sad to discover it’s not possible.
As a student:
Heading back to school to better yourself and ensure a brighter future? Sounds great, but there are a number of SORA rules you’ll have to follow or you could be headed back to prison for violating the requirements of the Sex Offender Registration Act. These include:
- You can’t attend the same school as your victim. State law forbids convicted sex offenders to go to school at the same place as their victim, so if you can’t get in anywhere else, or all the other options are further away and you don’t have transportation, sucks to be you.
- Many universities do background checks before accepting new students, so having a sex crime on your criminal record can seriously hamper your chances of getting into a good school.
- Because the sex offender registry is publicly accessible, the fact that you’re a sex offender is knowledge that’s available to your classmates. That can mean bullying, isolation, and harassment from other students, making your school experience extremely stressful, and in some cases, completely impossible.
Don’t let sex offender registration ruin your future!
Join us next time for a look at more ways being a registered sex offender can wreck your future and make life that much harder. But until then, please remember that the fastest way to avoid being a registered sex offender is to make sure you have the best possible attorney on your team when fighting sex crime allegations.
Here at The Kronzek Firm, our team of aggressive sex crime defense attorneys has been fighting against sex crime charges and winning for decades. We know what you’re up against, and we know what it takes to overcome. So call us at 866 766 5245 (866 7No Jail) today and get help from the best around. We’re here to help.