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Motion to be Removed from Megan’s Law and/or Community Supervision for Life Reporting Requirements

May 7, 2012

All sex offenders subject to Megan’s Law and Community Supervision for Life must register to the remainder of their lives unless the court grants the registrant’s application for removal. To be eligible for termination for reporting requirements, certain requirements must be met. First, the law requires that registrants remain “offense” or “crime” free for fifteen (15) years following the underlying conviction or release from incarceration, whichever is later. Additionally, the law requires that registrants demonstrate that they are not a threat to the community and that they will not pose a threat to the safety of other. Many Judges require a psychological report and evaluation in support of a Motion for Removal. Registrants that have committed more serious crimes (such as first degree aggravated sexual assault or sexual assault on a minor) are prevented from filling a Motion for Removal.

In two recent unpublished New Jersey Appellate Division cases, Megan’s Law registrants tried to argue that, in keeping with the purpose behind the statute to reduce recidivism, the use of the word “offense” or “crime” in those statutes should be limited only to “sexual offenses,” and not criminal offenses in general. In In the Matter of Registrant N.W., No. A-1695-10T1 (App. Div. May 19, 2011), the registrant had amassed two convictions for failing to properly register under Megan’s Law as well as multiple convictions for shoplifting, drugs, and robbery. In In the Matter of Registrant F.F., Jr., No. A-6073-10T1 (App. Div. Sept. 29, 2011), the registrant’s subsequent criminal history was limited to only one conviction for failure to register under Megan’s Law when his family was in the process of moving.

In both cases, the court held that the definition of “offense” or “crime” as used in Title 2C included by definition any crime, disorderly offense or petty disorderly offense, not just sexual offenses. The courts explained that this definition of “offense” or “crime” is consistent with the recognition in Registrant Risk Assessment Scaling (RRAS) of the significance of criminal offenses other than sexual in connection with the risk of recidivism. As such, the courts found that both registrants were ineligible for removal from Megan’s Law.

If you are interested in filing a Motion for Removal from Megan’s Law or Community Supervision for Life, we can help you determine whether or not you are eligible and file a Motion for Removal on your behalf.

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