Reform Sex Offender Laws Of Virginia
A few years ago, we would never have imagined ourselves as part of an organization working for the Reform of Sex Offender Laws. It was never our problem. We trusted our lawmakers. We trusted the system. There are times when we wish we did not know what we know today, times when we long for that peace of mind that naiveté brings.
Reform Sex Offender Laws of Virginia is a group of volunteers who know firsthand that the Virginia Sex Offender and Crimes Against Minors Registry has become a useless list of names that the public can no longer use to decipher between those who pose a true threat to society and from those who have been arbitrarily swept up in this legislative predator hysteria.
Dilution is not the solution.
Multiple crimes of varying degrees are now “registerable” offenses.
- Smacking or grabbing someone on the buttocks, groin or chest is a registerable offense
- Consensual sex between a 19 year old and a 17 year old or an 18 year old and a 16 year old is a registerable offense
- Sexting, between juveniles as well Sexting between a juvenile and any 18, 19 or 20 year old boyfriend or girlfriend results in a registerable offense
- In Virginia an accusation alone is sufficient to convict, no physical evidence, no witnesses, no specific dates or times must be given, just claim it and it’s done
- Public urinators, streakers and mooners that were convicted in other States and placed on their registry, will be listed on the Virginia registry when they relocate here
There is a large difference between stealing a newspaper and robbing a bank, these crimes are considered theft, but both are separated by law and society; thus the penalties are proportionately different from one another.
The current laws stigmatize someone as a “sex offender” or “sexual predator” in the United States and in Virginia do not distinguish the differences in offenses like consenting teenagers and serial rapists. Once listed, all are considered to be “perverts”, “pedophiles” and “predators” and just as dangerous as Phillip Garrido, Anthony Sowell and John Gardner for life.
Our goal is to stop new and harsher laws from passing in both Virginia and in Washington, DC, and to try to repeal or amend existing laws that we believe should never have been passed in the first place.
Our goals fall under three major categories: Laws, Registry Issues and Education.
- Require notification from the state of new and revised laws that will affect all registered sex offenders to ensure compliance within these laws
- Reinstate the non-violent classifications that existed prior to legislation enacted by the 2006 Virginia General Assembly. To reclassify whole groups of people without knowledge of the specifics nor opportunity at rebuttal violates the right to due process.
- Eliminate the retro-active (ex post facto) approach to sex offender legislation
- Eliminate any Virginia statute that states; ‘an accusation alone is sufficient to convict, no corroboration is required’ and to stop the accusation alone from being entered as evidence in court.
- Remove residency restrictions of registered offenders
- Revoke the current Virginia statute that gives the accuser only 21 days to recant, in which an unjust conviction and punishment could be overturned.
- Reduce sentencing guidelines to be more in keeping with offenses. Virginia is a no-parole state and each case should be judged on its own merits
- Return the Static 99 score to civilly commit in the State of Virginia to the recommended score of “6” by those who developed the test, instead of score of “4”
- Return civil commitment and the Sexually Violent Predator (SVP) designation in Virginia to the original 4 crimes in the SVP Act of 2006, instead of today's 28 crimes. By increasing the number of crimes, the SVP-eligible inmate population has increased by 350% in four years, and swept up those who should not be classified as an SVP.
- Charge any person or persons committing a crime or discriminating against a registrant solely due to the listing as a “Hate Crime” punishable to the full extent of the law
- Remove the employer/company name from public view as it serves no purpose other than to intimidate and influence the employer
- Remove non-violent offenders from the public Virginia registry
- Remove all young adults with consensual offenses from the registry
- Completely remove juveniles from the public registries
Education & Resource:
- Educate Virginians on the differences between non-violent and violent offenders and how the legislators have inadvertently blurred this distinction
- Educate the citizens of Virginia on what offenses establishes one as a registered sex offender
- The registry is a list of Condemnation…. until repaired it must be considered only as a point of Consideration.
Do not judge those listed on the registry solely on this failed tool. We deserve better, you deserve better.
In The News
Convicted Sex Offender Cleared of New Charges in Bedford County (Virginia), October 5, 2012:
Sex Offender Sues four Orange County Cities Over Park, Beach Bans (CA), October 5, 2012:
Texas Won't Participate in National Sex Offender Registry, October 5, 2012:
The News-Journal's Predatory Sensationalism On Sex Offenders Near Local Schools (FL), October 4, 2012:
Many States Fall Short of Federal Sex Offender Law, October 4, 2012: