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What is the sex offender registry?

The law mandates that the names of all persons convicted of certain sex crimes will be placed on the sex offender registry.

But what exactly is the sex offender registry and what can the public access?

About the sex offender registry

While every state has individual requirements they follow regarding how the registry system works, it's typically an informational database that lists the names of convicted sex offenders.

The type of information released, however, varies by jurisdiction. But under most circumstances, the sex offender registry will contain information such as:

  • The offender's name and photograph
  • Their name, as well as any aliases of the offender
  • The offender's current address
  • Information about the specific offense

Under most circumstances, this data is publically available through a wide variety of websites.

The FBI and other federal agencies also have access to additional information about an offender through a national database. However, this information is not available for public view.

Indirect consequences

Aside from an individual's person information contained on the registry, convicted sex offenders will also face a whole host of repercussions from the offense.

Many face social stigma from family and friends. They also often lose employment and housing prospects.

Getting help

Because of the impact the registry can have, individuals facing any type of sex offense charge are encouraged to enlist the help of a criminal defense attorney who can mitigate the list of potential consequences.

Petitioning for removal

Those who have been convicted of a sex crime and already listed on the sex offender registry may be able to petition for removal.

Click here to learn more about the removal process and the eligibility requirements.

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