Megan's Law was passed in New Jersey in 1994. It is named after a victim
of sexual assault and murder. Its intention is to allow police and the
public to better track those in their communities who have been convicted
of sex crimes. Basically, it is where the sex offender registry comes from.
Just because a law was enacted decades ago doesn't mean it doesn't
evolve. Lawmakers try to keep up with the times and, therefore, registered
sex offenders also have to be vigilant about understanding their limits
and rights in regards to rules of the registry. Megan's Law might
be in for some changes:
- Legislators want to hire more parole officers so each officer has fewer
registered sex offenders to monitor.
- Legislators want supervision to focus more heavily on registered sex offenders'
use of technology.
- Parole officers would be trained in the matter since their supervision
would cover what their parolees are doing online.
The above proposed changes reflect lawmakers' theory that the internet
serves as a tempting medium that parolees use to reoffend. Another proposed
change is related to technology but actually intended to go a bit easier
on a group that some argue shouldn't have to register as sex offenders.
Teens who engage in "sexting," if the legislation is passed,
would not have to join the life-changing sex offender registry.
There are various other aspects of the proposed changes to sex offender
laws. The laws tend to change and can leave a mess of confusion among
the public, currently registered sex offenders and even law enforcement.
Anyone who is worried about charges of sex crimes or about details related
to their sex offender status should look toward experienced legal guidance.
Our Bergen County criminal defense lawyers help people accused of
internet sex crimes and other sex-related offenses.
Source: NJ Today, "Senators Introduce Bill To Modernize Megan's Law," April 5, 2013