West Palm Beach Sex Crime Offense Lawyer Says Offenders Must Register Twice a Year And Complete the Registration Process
West Palm Beach Sex Crimes Lawyers: In Florida, sex offenders must register twice a year with local law enforcement, as to where they reside reports Palm Beach criminal defense lawyer Andrew Stine
In the State of Florida, sex offenders must register twice a year with local law enforcement officials, as to where they reside. See Fla. Gen. Stat. 943.0435(14)(a), (14)(c)4 and (9)(a). In order for sex offenders to be compliant with the Florida sex offender registration law, the offender must show they “actually completed” the registration process and this requires an updated Florida Drivers License or Florida Identification Card to do so.
The definition of “updated” means that a sex offender’s Florida Drivers License or Identification Card has their recent address, recent photo and is not expired. The sex offender must present the proper identification credentials to his or her local law enforcement official and properly complete the “sex offender” registration paperwork. Failure to do so is a 3rd degree felony punishable by up to 5 years in the Department of Corrections.
Many times in Palm Beach County, Florida, as was articulated in the recent appellate decision in Frank Boltri v. State, 4D13-2943, the sex offender will properly register for a period of time and then fail to properly reregister because of what the defendant perceives as a “legitimate” reason not to do so. In Boltri, he registered as a sex offender in November but failed to properly register the following period, because when he showed up at the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office stockade location to register, his Florida Identification card was expired. The Deputy working the sex offender desk told Boltri to come back within 48 hours with a new updated Florida Identification Card, so that he could properly register. Boltri believed that it would be impossible to come back within the time frame and also believed that by showing up in person and giving the deputy his information that he abided by the statute.
When the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office was searching the sex offender registration list, as does every Florida county on a semi-annual basis, it found that Boltri failed to reregister as a sex offender and a warrant was issued for his arrest for “failure to properly register.” Boltri was arrested and convicted in West Palm Beach, FL for failing to register as a sex offender; and was sentenced to the Department of Corrections. Sex offenders who are convicted for failing to register or reregister as sex offenders most of the time, if not all of the time, are incarcerated because of how punitive the Florida Sentencing Scoresheet is tabulated.
On Appeal, Boltri argued that his attempt to register was in fact in person at the Sheriff’s Office and therefore, he did fulfill the requirements of registering as a sex offender. Remember, under Florida Law the sex offender must report in person each year, during the month of the sexual offender’s birthday and during the sixth month following the sexual offender’s birth month, to the sheriff’s office in the county in which he or she resides or is otherwise located to reregister. See Fla. Gen. Stat. 943.0435(14)(a). So Boltri argued he satisfied both prongs of the statute by being timely and in person.
The Appellate Court disagreed and said “registering” means the offender must appear in person at their local law enforcement location and provide the following information: any changes to the offender’s permanent, temporary, or “transient” address and to do so requires a valid Identification Card or Florida Drivers License. This means sex offenders must complete the paperwork and give their proper address within the time allotted under the statute. Failing to do so, like Boltri, because his address was not provided in the facts provided, is in fact a violation of Florida law and therefore, his conviction will be affirmed.
There are however, times when a sex offender does not properly register on a timely basis and no violation of the law occurs. For example, the Appellate Court recognizes that there may be forces outside any sex offender’s control, which may hinder the offender from timely registration or reregistration. These forces may come from acts of nature like a natural disaster, illness or hospitalization of the offender, or possibly other events like accidents; but just walking into a sheriff’s office and doing no more, does not comply with the sex offender registration and reregistration requirements under Florida law.
If you or a loved one have been arrested for violation of a sex offender crime, failing to register as a sex offender or re register as a sex offender in Palm Beach County, Florida, telephone West Palm Beach Criminal Defense Lawyer Andrew D. Stine at 561 880 4300. For more than a decade, Palm Beach Criminal Defense Attorney Andrew D. Stine has been defending those arrested for sex crimes and has a successful record in helping those charged achieve winning results at or before trial. Hire Stine or Do The Time!
Andrew D. Stine –
http://www.andrewdstine.com – West Palm Beach Sex Crime Offense Lawyers
561 880 4300