SD Governor Signs Bill to Create Tiered Sex Offender List
Pierre, S.D. (AP) – A bill allowing some people to get their names removed from the state sex offender registry has been signed by South Dakota Gov. Mike Rounds.
The measure creates three levels of sex crimes. Those convicted of the most serious sex offenses, including crimes against children, could never get off the offender list. Those convicted of midlevel sex crimes could ask to be removed after 25 years. And those convicted of less serious crimes, such as statutory rape when the offender is no older than 21, could seek to be removed from the list after 10 years.
Apparently, as within the Adam Walsh Act, there is no judicial review permitted in determining an individual’s tier level. Categorizing past offenders into more stringent registration tiers based on their offense alone – after their they have completed their sentences – violates due process provisions of the Constitution.
Furthermore, prohibiting a group of citizens from ever being able to petition their way off these lists only creates a sub-class of people who have nothing to live for and no reason to be law abiding, which will only put public safety at greater risk.