Megan’s law is actually a federal law and it is a way to refer to state laws that require making the information of a sex offender public. The law was in response to a young girl named Megan Kanka who was raped and killed at age 7 by someone who had been convicted of two previous sex offenses. When someone is charged with a sex offense, at that point they are innocent, they do not have to register and they do not have to report to any agencies. Further down the process if they either plead guilty or are convicted at trial then at that point they will have to register as a sex offender if it is a sexual offense that requires registration. After they register they have to inform the local police department about certain things that are going on in their lives including their current address. If they move, they have to notify the police department and in turn they notify the proper government agency to put it in their database so that a proper database can be updated. In California, the penal code that governs that is California Penal Code 290. This is where Megan’s Law comes in, Megan’s Law is the law that makes this information available to the public. This makes one able to research this information before moving to new neighborhood or enrolling their kinds in a new school district.
Since 1947 have been required to register in California but that information was never deemed to have to be public. Megan’s Law was the law that changed this and made the information go public. California law, like other states, prohibit the use of this information to harass anyone or use it against them but just that notation on the books does not always prevent harassment. We have seen several situations where someone was dating another person and they had a bad breakup and now they post the Megan’s Law information on social media in order to embarrass the other person or in order to use that against them. This is a common criticism of Megan’s Law but in consideration when the legislature has looked into this, they believe that the good that the law does for the community outweighs any problems that it creates.
Registration can dramatically affect your life
Sex Offense registration is something that will affect someone for the rest of their lives. Of course, it is something that can be avoided in certain cases and that is why it is very important to contact a criminal defense attorney in San Diego that knows how to handle these types of cases. At Ozols Law Firm we have handled all types of sex crime cases and we are able to fight for your freedom.
To learn more about Megan’s Law or to do a search for Megan’s Law visit http://www.meganslaw.ca.gov