The New York State Sex Offender Registration Act took effect in 1996. Beginning at that time, anyone who was on parole or probation or incarcerated for a sex offense was required to register as a sex offender. A list of New York sex offenders is available to the public.
The length of time an individual must register as a sex offender depends on his or her risk of committing another sex crime and the harm the offender has committed to the community. However, the minimum amount of time a sex offender must stay on the registry is 20 years, even for individuals who have committed low risk crimes. If a sex offender refuses to comply with the registry’s requirements, that’s treated as a felony.
Once a sex offender is required to be on the registry, there are some requirements the offender must meet. The offender must file an annual verification, reporting where he or she lives, with the Division of Criminal Justice Services. If the offender moves, he or she must notify DCJS in writing within 10 days. The offender must have a new photograph taken every one to three years, and also must notify the DCJS of any institute of higher education he or she is attending. Also, the offender must provide information on Internet service providers, Internet screen names and e-mail accounts to DCJS.
As you can see, being required to register as a sex offender can have a huge impact on your life. Convicted sex offenders can have problems finding housing, jobs, entering college, and having a personal life. If you have been charged with a sex crime, it’s imperative that you do everything possible to fight the charges.