« A call for more sentencing rationality in Florida | Main | Should we consider military service as an alternative to incarceration? »

January 30, 2009

Lots of strong SORNA analysis...

in a series of strong posts at Sex Crimes:

January 30, 2009 at 01:31 AM | Permalink


TrackBack URL for this entry:

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Lots of strong SORNA analysis... :


Exempt from SORNA are an offenders Passport or immigration ID numbers. How can Floridians or other states get Registries to list "country of Origin" on the offenders information page? Florida has a disproportionate amount of criminal alien offenders due to "Exemptions from Deportation" for violent felons depending on the United States "relations" with them. This is insane. Miami -Dade counties majority of convicted sex offenders are Hispanics from Latin American countries. So far the only solution is to lower the residency restrictions to make room for more. Floridians are fed up and need to know how poor immigration policies effect the safety of their families.

Posted by: Valerie Parkhurst | Nov 4, 2009 9:01:47 AM

Memorandum in support of complaint

I assert my rights have been violated due to the requirement by the state of Missouri that I must register as a sex offender even though my offense was committed prior to the law being enacted. Missouri is holding me to the standard of the Missouri law and not to the standard of the federal law.
To wit:
The Missouri Supreme court ruled in Doe V Keathley ( herein after referred to as Doe) that sex offenders convicted prior to the enactment of the Sexual Offenders Registration and Notification Act (herein after referred to as SORNA) were required to register under the SORNA act. In that ruling they stated
“respondents are subject to the independent, federally mandated registration requirements under the Sexual Offenders Registration and Notification Act” emphasis added.
The court later in Doe reaffirmed the separateness of the federal law from the state law.

“ Therefore, SORNA imposes an independent obligation requiring respondents to register as sex offenders in Missouri. The independent registration requirement under SORNA operates irrespective of any allegedly retrospective state law that has been enacted and may be subject to the article I, section 13 ban on the enactment of retrospective state laws” emphasis added.

Previous to this ruling they had ruled that Missouri law 589.400 was retrospective in regards to those convicted prior to the enactment of the state law and their ruling in Doe in no way vacates that ruling. In fact in Doe their ruling was that the now required registration results from the federal law and not the state law.
Now the question then arises does the federal law truly require the states to register those convicted prior to SORNA? I conclude it does not for the following reasons.
In the final guidelines to SORNA the US Department of Justice and the office of the attorney general of the United States address those convicted of offenses prior to SORNA. They state:

“C. Retroactivity
The applicability of the SORNA requirements is not limited to sex offenders whose
predicate sex offense convictions occur following a jurisdiction’s implementation of a
conforming registration program. Rather, SORNA’s requirements took effect when SORNA was
enacted on July 27, 2006, and they have applied since that time to all sex offenders, including
those whose convictions predate SORNA’s enactment. See 72 FR 8894, 8895-96 (Feb. 28,
2007); 28 CFR 72.3. The application of the SORNA standards to sex offenders whose
convictions predate SORNA creates no ex post facto problem “because the SORNA sex offender
registration and notification requirements are intended to be non-punitive, regulatory measures
adopted for public safety purposes, and hence may validly be applied (and enforced by criminal
sanctions) against sex offenders whose predicate convictions occurred prior to the creation of
these requirements. See Smith v. Doe, 538 U.S. 84 (2003).” 72 FR at 8896.
As a practical matter, jurisdictions may not be able to identify all sex offenders who fall
within the SORNA registration categories, where the predicate convictions predate the enactment
of SORNA or the jurisdiction’s implementation of the SORNA standards in its registration
program, particularly where such sex offenders have left the justice system and merged into the
general population long ago. But many sex offenders with such convictions will remain in (or
reenter) the system because:
! They are incarcerated or under supervision, either for the predicate sex offense or for
some other crime;
! They are already registered or subject to a pre-existing sex offender registration
requirement under the jurisdiction’s law; or
! They hereafter reenter the jurisdiction’s justice system because of conviction for some
other crime (whether or not a sex offense).

Sex offenders in these three classes are within the cognizance of the jurisdiction, and the
jurisdiction will often have independent reasons to review their criminal histories for penal,
correctional, or registration/notification purposes. Accordingly, a jurisdiction will be deemed to
have substantially implemented the SORNA standards with respect to sex offenders whose
predicate convictions predate the enactment of SORNA or the implementation of SORNA in the
jurisdiction’s program if it registers these sex offenders, when they fall within any of the three
classes described above, in conformity with the SORNA standards. (For more about the
registration of sex offenders in these classes, see the discussion under “retroactive classes” in
Part IX of these Guidelines.)” emphasis added.
And in section IX of the same.

“As discussed in Part II.C of these Guidelines, SORNA applies to all sex offenders,
including those convicted of their registration offenses prior to the enactment of SORNA or prior
to particular jurisdictions’ incorporation of the SORNA requirements into their programs.
Jurisdictions are specifically required to register such sex offenders if they remain in the system
as prisoners, supervisees, or registrants, or if they later reenter the system because of conviction
for some other crime (whether or not the new crime is a sex offense).” Emphasis added.
The Department of Justice operates a SMART office to enable jurisdictions with questions about the law to contact them and receive answers. I queried the SMART office

-----Original Message-----

From: fdroney@charter.net [mailto:fdroney@charter.net]
Sent: Monday, October 12, 2009 1:11 PM
Subject: retroactive registration

“ In reading this from the website:
Many jurisdictions struggle with the question of whether SORNA applies
To sex offenders convicted before it was passed or before a jurisdiction
Has substantially implemented it.

SORNA's final guidelines limit its
retroactive reach. Jurisdictions must register sex offenders who were
not required to register prior to SORNA's substantial implementation if those sex offenders are incarcerated, on supervision, or if they later reenter the system because of conviction for some other crime (whether or not the new crime is a sex offense). Jurisdictions are allowed to phase in SORNA registration requirements for these recaptured sex offenders. After jurisdiction has substantially implemented SORNA, those sex offenders who are subject to retroactive application and who meet the tiering criteria should be registered as such:

Tier I: within 1 year.

Tier II: within 6 months.

Tier III: within 3 months.
I take this to mean that is an offender was not required to register
prior to SORNA then they would only be required to register if they reenter
the system due to being convicted of a new crime regardless of whether it is
a sex offense?
Then if a person was not required to register and is not arrested or
convicted of a new crime then they are not required to register?

Fred Droney

and received the following reply.
Thank you for your questions.

As you suspected in your email, under SORNA, a sex offender who was not
required to register prior to SORNA would be required to register if
they reenter the system due to being convicted of a new crime regardless
of whether it is a sex offense. In addition, jurisdictions must
register sex offenders who were not required to register prior to SORNA's substantial implementation if those sex offenders are
incarcerated or on supervision.

Of course, to be clear, SORNA is federal legislation that sets national
standards that registration jurisdictions are being asked to come into
compliance with: it is ultimately up to those jurisdictions (for
example, states) to craft their registration schemes, including
determining who they will require to register retroactively.

I hope that this answers your question. Please feel free to contact us
again if you have more questions.

Stephanie C. LoConto
Policy Advisor
SMART Office
(202) 305-2627

The federal law then is quite clear that the state is not required to register those convicted prior to SORNA taking effect unless the offender reenters the system. It is affirmed as such by the opinion of the US Attorney General by their designate.
So assuming then that this is the case that the states are not required to register those prior to the act taking effect it raises some questions.
If the states are not required to register me then I am not required to register under SORNA.
It can be argued that regardless of whether the state is required to register me I am still required to register under the act. Okay then taking that as a given (which I do not concede but merely for the sake of argument) the act itself requires me to register, there simply under current law exists no penalty for me if I do not. To explain SORNA states:
“SORNA contemplates that substantial criminal penalties will be available for registration
violations at the state, local, and federal levels. Section 113(e) of SORNA requires jurisdictions
(other than Indian tribes) to provide a criminal penalty that includes a maximum term of
imprisonment greater than one year for the failure of a sex offender to comply with the SORNA
However, in reading the law of Missouri I can be imprisoned for failing to register under the state law which the state law in previous rulings by the court is retrospective and does not apply to me so any penalty that results from a violation of a law that does not apply to me would also not apply to me. So it seems I am required to register under the federal law, but the state is not required to register me under the federal law and further if I do not register then there exists no law or penalty on the state level that I can be prosecuted for. SORNA requires the state to craft a law or bring their law into compliance with SORNA including establishing into that state law a penalty for failure to register. Under the current constitution of Missouri this cannot be done when concerning the offenders whose conviction and release from prison predates the act. If the state crafts a law including a penalty then the only way it would apply to me would be in enforcing the federal law. The state is not in the business of enforcing a federal law nor could it prosecute me in the state courts or imprison me in the state institutions for violating a federal law. Further since the state law is retrospective as to persons in my class then they cannot prosecute me or imprison me under state law either. It would be up to the federal courts to prosecute me and imprison me in a federal institution for violating a federal law.

SORNA does allow states to go beyond the minimums required and it can be argued that the state law would apply to me as it conforms with SORNA even if going beyond the minimum and thus the penalties would as well. However to that I would advance this argument.
Per the MO Supreme Court I am not bound by the state law, but by the federal law. The federal law sets minimums and therefore any thing in the state law that is beyond the minimum required of me cannot be enforced. I contend that because the state law contains more than these minimums then the entire law does not pertain to me. Further the state by holding me to the letter of the state law rather than to the standard of the federal law is by the act itself enforcing the state law and not the federal law. To wit:
SORNA requires me to register based on my class every 90 days. The state law requires me to register every 90 days and once annually on my birthday. I first contend that the only reason to require me to register on my birthday is punitive in nature and if so would result in the entire law being unconstitutional. Secondly, I contend that since I am only bound by the federal law then I must only meet the requirements of the federal law. Anything beyond that places me under the state law and as settled I am not bound by that due to the retrospective clause.

I contend I am not required to register for those reasons stated above. I was arrested for my offense in August of 1988 and convicted in June of 1989. I was release from prison in August of 1995 and released outright from parole and my sentence in 1998 having then served the entire 10 yr sentence either in prison or on parole. All of these dates predate the SORNA act and the state law. I have not been arrested nor have I reentered the system since these dates.
So in quick recap:
The state law is retrospective to people in my class. Ie those convicted and released prior to the state law.
The federal law does not require Missouri to register me unless I renter the system.
The state because of the retrospective clause in the Missouri constitution is precluded from crafting a state law that will allow it to register those convicted prior to the state law being enacted. So, therefore there exists nor under the current constitution can there exist a state law that can be enforced against me concerning registration. However, the state is enforcing the state law when requiring me to register and by their agent through the St Louis County Police Department have threatened to prosecute me under the state law.
I am required under the federal law to register according to the state, but not conceded by me. Therefore, it is the duty of the federal government to register me and if I fail to register then prosecute me. However, under the current SORNA law there does not exist a provision for the federal government to register individuals, but rather leaves it to the states to do so. In the case of the state of Missouri the state constitution is at odds with the SORNA requirement that the states register me.

Posted by: Fred Droney | Jan 15, 2010 5:50:26 PM

My Name is Keith Richard Radford Jr. I live in Burbank CA. I was one of JW's for over 20 years. Sex Offenders are setup for political reasons through time it has become clear that people are willing to kill their own children to gain comfort from leaders both religious/political willing to tell them sex is much more important than it really is. Sex is not the end of life; in fact it is required for mankind to continue to exist. Having gone to jail to complete my report on the life lived by anyone put through the process its clear that sex laws have no value. The touch of an individual has no validity in whether the state has an obligation to incarcerate/stigmatize/embezzle/steal time, homes, children, businesses, cars, money, life, from anyone using sex laws to justify thousands of years old laws based on dynamics that have no worth, validity or proof of substance. The bankruptcy of a nation through these avenues is at the root or core of what has differentiated since the Flower Power Sexual Revolution of the 60’s to date. A coalition was made and experiments put into play. Promises have been broken and the sell out has proved its unsound policies when lawyers getting $600.00 to $2,000.00 dollars and hr. When a couple of hundred thousand dollars and you can walk out of jail on any offence. The use of law/bets/derivates/policies in this mater is out of line with reality. I was part of those experiments without my consent as a child I was implanted with an id chip when my families were all military. At a young age after much conditioning I fell from a tree dislocated my sholder and the device was forced out of me. To continue the process after so much investment the experiment was pushed forward when a prison official said “I have to power too stop this and send you home” many knew and hedged their bets just like the mutual/commercial/public banks did in the process. Some have even used cancer survivors, and other institutionalized individuals like my sister with cerebral palsy to forward their agenda. After their use of an individual’s identity in ops outside boarders these people who make bombs decide to kill the used body in the cover up of their past actions, get another id and go on their next operation. I met Richard Boon in the 50’s at a school for the mentally retarded that befriended me and told of his disapproval of the process. I have a device in my hand. I had a device in my shoulder. The years have been difficult and I have been ambassador protemp too China, and worked all over the world France/Korea/England/ etc. I have been aware of the influence in my life at some levels but over time have become more aware and when the answer to their project did not yield the speculated results these people want another do over. When Ms Norton and I talked on the campus I told her I would quite likely have too go to jail to expose the whole thing and I did, its clear that political prisoners over sex is just despicable. The do over was in the late sixties and now they want to do it again looking for different results. The results are clear. The laws used to make some unsound hedging of people on speculation that sex is a due diligence for destroying their jobs home or otherwise exploiting their loans/lives/ families is only a waist and it is not as mentioned above a reasonable response to the ambiguity of ones moral thinking over another. It boils down to the fact that we are on rails being pushed by people that set in judgment with no understanding of the issue, only their need for a permanent underclass to do the work for them because they say they are good. They are a very small group and people in power and people not in power will rise up against them to save their own lives from them, that use such unfounded and easily seen through deceptions based on the faith that our best interest is being sought when the out come will cause society too see its use is negative. I want with all my heart too sue the shorts/panties off you all! There is no tier too justify the se offender registry. Phone 818 627-8060 so call me or are you frightend of the phone too?

Posted by: Keith Richard Radford Jr | Jun 3, 2010 10:44:03 AM

Post a comment

In the body of your email, please indicate if you are a professor, student, prosecutor, defense attorney, etc. so I can gain a sense of who is reading my blog. Thank you, DAB