You Must Register on the SOR if You are Convicted of a Sex Crime

Sex Crimes in Michigan

In Michigan, there is various conduct that is considered a sex crime. Criminal Sexual Conduct or CSC involves illegal, forced, or unwanted sexual conduct exhibited toward another person such as unwanted touching and rape. Internet Computer Sex includes posting child pornography or using the internet to arrange a meeting a minor child for sex. Indecent Exposure and aggravated indecent exposure include publicly exposing yourself in a place where you were actually seen but where you could be seen. Lastly Child Pornography is not protected speech, so possessing or distributing is clearly prohibited and the penalties are harsh.

Michigan Sex Offender Registry

If you are convicted of any sex crime, you will be required to register as a sex offender on the Sex Offender Registry. The number of times you are required each year and how many years you must register is governed by the severity of the crime. If you fail to register or are even late when you are required to renew is a separate felony with which you could be charged.

The Sex Offender registry is accessible by the public and anyone with a computer can type in their street address to find the names, addresses, and often, the pictures of any person on the registry who lives nearby. In addition, if you are on the Registry, you can’t live in certain areas, you may be restricted trying to visit your kid’s school, and professional licenses could be revoked.

The SOR was established in 1994 by the Michigan Sex Offenders Registration Act and created the database in response to the Jacob Wetterling kidnapping and enactment of the Crimes Against Children and Sexually Violent Offender Registration Act of 1994. This federal act required states to establish specific requirements for persons convicted of sexual offenses and certain other crimes against minors.

The Michigan SOR Act required the Michigan State Police (MSP) to keep a sex offender database. State Police Posts, like other local law enforcement agencies, serve as locations where sex offenders can register or report any changed information. The penalty for failing verify an address is a 93-day misdemeanor and the penalty for failing to change an address is a felony. In addition, the registry must post a picture of the registrant.

The SOR Act requires all sex offenders in Michigan to register their address with law enforcement after conviction.. Offenders remain on the registry for 25 years or life, depending on the conviction. Offenders released from prison must remain on the registry for a minimum of 10 years or for the duration of their sentence, which ever is longer.

The Legislature has made changes to the SOR and continues to modify and change the requirements and the time those convicted must register. There have also been changes that may allow certain individuals who are currently on the register, to Petition the Court to remove their listing. An experienced defense lawyer may be able to get you off the list or reduce the period you must register.

The Accused is Entitled to a Polygraph or Lie Detector

Michigan law provides that a person accused of criminal sexual conduct is entitled to a lie detector test. The results of the test are not admissible in Court but, often, the Prosecutor will dismiss any charges if the accused successfully passes a polygraph administered by the state. While some individuals who are lying are able to beat the lie detector, a polygraph rarely says someone is lying who is actually telling the truth.

If you are accused, it is best not to submit to a police administered polygraph before speaking with an experienced defense attorney. It’s important to have a clear understanding of the process and what and what not to say to the polygraph examiner before or after the exam. Although the accused is entitled to a lie detector test, the Prosecutor cannot ask the accuser to take a polygraph exam or even tell the accuser that you passed.

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