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WA Court : Separation of Powers Ruling on Law

March 16, 2009

Seattletimes.nwsource.com : Washington court reverses sex offender conviction.

A state appeals court has reversed the conviction of a Thurston County sex offender for failing to report.

The court said it was a violation of separation of powers for the sheriff’s office to both classify and enforce a sex offender’s level. The court said the Legislature improperly delegated classification authority.

KITI radio reports that sheriffs, prosecutors and defense lawyers are reviewing Tuesday’s decision to determine how it will affect sex offender registration in Washington.

The case involves a man convicted in 1993 of sexual exploitation of a minor, Domingo Torres Ramos. In 2001 he was classified by the Thurston County sheriff’s office as a Level Two sex offender. He was convicted in 2007 of failing to report.

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