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Compliance Checks II

There have been some long, thoughtful comments regarding Compliance Checks in the General Comments section recently. To make sure they do not get buried they are moved to this post.

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3/19/2014 – 8:40pm The compliance cop just came over and I spoke with him. The compliance cop came by and I spoke with him for the first time in several years. I did this because everyone is tired of them coming over unexpectedly throughout the year. Everyone needs to be aware that some of these people are wolves in sheep’s clothing, and this one was/is definitely a wolf. He was acting polite and respectful as he tried to dupe me out of my rights. He didn’t expect me to know my rights. “I know my rights.” The first thing he… Read more »

Nice job Q! I’ve always wondered though, when you get a new car are you supposed to immediately report the vehicle info to them? I have never done that so I’m curious did you have that bike when you registered last? If so why didn’t they have that license plate?

Hi Steve:

Whenever you get a new vehicle or get rid of an old one you have five day’s to report it of you face being charged with a felony and going to prison.

(but it’s not punishment; it’s civil and doesn’t violate cruel and unusual punishment, ex-post-facto or anything else)

If anything has changed I hope someone in this thread will let us know.

Hi Steve:

I’ve had the bike for several years now, and they DID HAVE THE LICENSE PLATE NUMBER. I suspected it was just another ruse to get onto the property so they could escalate things to their favor and put me at a disadvantage. As it turns out; thanks to Joe & Rob, I believe I did not have to agree to give them the license plate information they already had.

@Q – where are you getting this from “Whenever you get a new vehicle or get rid of an old one you have five day’s to report it of you face being charged with a felony and going to prison.”? Please provide the pertinent language / link in the Penal Code. I am not a lawyer but I see nothing in PC 290 that specifies a time frame for reporting a new / different plate outside of reporting the current one at the routine annual registration. Unless you change / add / delete residences or return from incarceration longer than… Read more »

Hi Joe: The cop’s told me that. The registration cop also told me that. It’s interesting there’s nothing in the PC290 code about that. I do believe I may have been lied to; imagine that! I’m more inclined to believe you than a cop. And thank you for the link’s. If this is true the next time I am asked for that information I will refuse to give it to them, just like I refused to let them in the house, on the property or sign the piece of paper. Perhaps Janice would be so kind as to chime in… Read more »

At first glance PC 290 is completely overwhelming and seemingly unmanageable, especially on-line. I would strongly recommend everyone copy and paste the entire thing into Word or OpenOffice, and then format it, by sections, sub-sections, proper indents, bolding, etc. It quickly loses much of its intimidating nature. I just pretended to be back in college or high school.

Read it, know it, don’t let anyone bs you. Have a copy handy at the next check up. If something is not in there it is not law (unless something is a local ordinance – print those too).

Hmmm. I bought a vehicle and thought I had read that 5 day notification requirement, just like Q thought, but no cop told me about it. I don’t trust anything anyone says without looking it up, So I wonder where I got it from?

Hi Tim, whats up?

I was wondering if you are subject to compliance checks where you live and what’s your experience been like?

Hi Joe: And thanks again for bringing vehicle thing to my attention. The input from Rob was really helpful too and much appreciated as well. Now I’m pissed at the cops for almost getting over on me with the license plate thing. Now I know I could have told him – “it’s not law, it’s not required so you’ll just have to go with the information you already have.” – I can’t tell you how good it felt calling him on his BS instead of not knowing and basically being manipulated at the will of LE because of ignorance of… Read more »

This is one of my BIG problems with enforcement of 290. It can’t be enforced if you did not have knowledge of whatever the point is, such as you had no idea you were supposed to register for your offense, you were never told. Yet, this “knowledge” can be determined simply because some idiot cop with a high school education said you have to do this or that — even though, as you point out, they are too uneducated to know what they hell they are talking about, will tell you all kinds of things that are wrong, are just… Read more »

Hi Anonymous Nobody:

I think they are counting on the registrant to be ignorant of their rights, as well as what the police can and can not do. It’s legal for them to lie, too. It’s been my experience that the police will do everything they can to get you to give up your rights. I know it’s wrong. I know it’s screwed up. But our society seems to be wrong and screwed up!

I stand corrected!

I just did my yearly update, have purchased 2 new vehicles this year, and have a new work address. I did not report ANY of that before I went in for annual update. No questions at all when I did. KNOW THE LAW! There is NO REQUIREMENT to update ANY information EXCEPT a change of residence until your annual. Those conditions you initial are the law. READ THEM and follow THEM, NOT what you are told by anyone, on here or LE.

Hi Rob:

What I’ve been finding out here by you and Joe today confirm my suspicions that the cop was using the “I just need to verify your license plate” statement as a different angle to get me to give up my rights so he could look for things to arrest me for. He would not have found anything; but I refuse to co-sign their BS anyway. I’ve also been skimming the PC-290 site Joe posted and I will be studying it closely to further educate myself. Thanks for the info!

If he wants to do that, he needs a search warrant — unless he can get-trick you into giving permission.

Great job, it was very strong of you to maintain your composure and ground.

I personally don’t talk to them at all. People who are Registered should enclose their properties with fencing or walls and never all them in. If you happen to run into one at your wall just tell them that it’s nothing personal but the Registries are a pile BS and you won’t do anything unless it is forced by law.

Hi FRegistryTerrorists:

I had a poker face; but I was scared because I had never stood up in this way and it was new to me. I’ve heard it gets easier the more often you do it. Meanwhile; I’ve been studying the 290 code to give more ammo to defend myself with.

They always seem to know when I leave the gate open and the dogs are inside. I am fastidious about keeping the gate closed, both because I have lost a couple of dogs to the highway, and I don’t like unwelcome visitors. Yet, the very few times I left the gate open, they come down the driveway to do the compliance check. It is more than a coincidence. Last week, when I was in my office (more like a walk in closet) my daughter opened the door, and there they were, one wearing a bullet proof vest and the other… Read more »

Hi Broken Wings: Not answering the door has been my strategy for not participating in this campaign against human rights and for oppression. But after my latest experience and the satisfaction I felt afterward, I just might start answering the door. Perhaps I can find something to use against them in a court of law that will benefit all registrants and bring attention to the true nature of these unnecessary intrusions that make everyone in the home feel unsafe. If I ever get any work I might install cameras in plain sight and see how they like that! I have… Read more »

Hi Q. This is aka Tim. Thought I would change my screen name to reflect how I feel. Maybe I’ll change it every week. Especially if, heaven forbid, Prop 35 is validated. Could use your painting skills on a deck staining job, but I guess it is too far to drive to San Diego for one, maybe two small jobs. I once did a job in LA. Working out of a trailer, but I kept it to 5 business days. It was complicated enough planning it, finding materials and temporary workers, without wondering if I needed to re-register. I also… Read more »

Oh; OK: Hi Tim: San Diego is indeed too far. I haven’t worked since December and it sucks!!!! I can’t afford the gas for my white pervert E-350 diesel van anyway. I can’t even afford to troll my area looking for new victims to victimize(sarcastic statement). I’m stuck in a cheesy Motel because the house is being tented for termites, I’m stuck here till Friday and I’m bored silly because the wind is blowing like a typhoon and I’ll get sand blasted If I ride my bike anywhere. On the upside, I have a deck and some wrought iron to… Read more »

Love your analysis of Registration and I think it is very valid.

It is great that you have gates for your property. I would strive to keep them closed always. But I also wonder if you couldn’t post signs that basically say that law enforcement is never welcome. How about “If you have not been explicitly invited to this property, you are requested to leave immediately. If you do not, you are illegally trespassing.”?

Hi FRegistryTerrorists:

I’m putting up no trespassing signs; I believe that’s all I need. If anyone has some input on this I’m listening.

Several months ago, I purchased a home with my girlfriend. I was quite careful to be certain no K-12 schools were nearby (There is a private university about 4000 feet away). I made certain to register within the allotted time, taking time off work to do so. Yesterday, for only the second time in nearly 20 years my home was visited by officers come to assure that I in fact live at the address I gave when I registered. My girlfriend was home and assured them I did live here. They made vague comments about “that school over there”… I… Read more »

Hi Bruce Ferrell: That was good advise you gave to your girlfriend. Be sure to tell her she must act confident, even if she doesn’t feel confident. If they sense any weakness they will pounce and do all they can to exploit it to their advantage. I say this because if compliance checks are a regular thing in your new area I’m pretty sure eventually one of the cops that show up will be a overly ambitious type that will do everything in his power to get her to give up your search and seizure rights. I’m a law abiding… Read more »

I would advise you and your girlfriend not to speak to them at all. You have no obligation to do so. Tell them that you don’t support Registration or nanny big government so stop wasting resources and leave.

Of course, thank god you aren’t in THIS jurisdiction. It’s out of state, but this sheriff is definitely up on the harassment food chain.

They send TWO vehicles for compliance checks: One with “SEX OFFENDER COMPLIANCE” written in big letters on the first vehicle, and followed by a cop car WITH ITS LIGHTS FLASHING. This goes completely against the intent of Smith v. Doe, as well as any vestiges of “reintegration” into the community following “punishment.”

Not punitive? Right-o, dufus.

Hi Eric Knight: WOW! This is F__ked up BIG TIME! This sheriff’s office obviously get’s way too much money from the state!!! Two vehicles, three deputies, sign’s!!! This seems like a pretty extreme way to make sure someone lives where they say they live. I think this proves my belief/statement that compliance checks are just a pretense for harassment and looking for any reason to arrest the registrant that already done his/her time and paid their debt to society. A clear violation of ex-post-facto. It’;s pretty obvious the sheriff doesn’t know what he’s talking about. He claims registrants have a… Read more »

I wonder why these kind of people don’t listen to knowledgeable people with experience in the area of “sex offenders.”

Long ago I realized that only responsible, intelligent and mentally healthy people examine their beliefs and behaviors.
Clearly, this task force is headed by someone devoid of one or more of these innate qualities.

Could this poor excuse for a sheriff be self promoting at the expense of people who made a mistake, paid their debt to society, and now are rigorously denied the human right to get on with their life because of lesser men like Sheriff Ken Christesen?

It’s called JOB SECURITY. They need to make this LOOK like they need more police which means more money. That is it. That’s the only reason for this crap.

Also the whole “I am a big man with a big gun” show usually means…”I am a little man in the trouser department” with something prove. Everyone knows what the something is dude.

Pick on someone your own “size”…HAHA

After reading the previous responses, I am wondering if Janice could weigh in on this briefly. My thought concerns the recent victories in forcing various cities to stop passing and enforcing restrictions on visiting parks, beaches, etc. Could a similar campaign be initiated where each county is sued to prevent the sheriffs from conducting illegal compliance checks. If they are not in the penal code, they are clearly a civil rights violation. Rather than sue individual departments, I should think that suing individual counties would force them to make certain that all departments within a county refrain from this type… Read more »

The only reason I talk to them is because I am still on probation. If I was not I would not talk except to tell them that if they continue to harass me I will see them in court using PC290 aganist them.

Hi noname:

Check out the links in my post at the top of the page. I wouldn’t do things the way you are saying. They’ll only get hostile with you, and you don’t want that. There are ways to deal with them covered in the links at the top of this page. Besides it’s much more fun to tell them “no, I don’t consent” and watching their reaction.

Moving over from General Comments: There has been a lot said at this site about compliance checks. No, there is no mandate for police to do compliance checks. In fact, as I read the ordinance, it seems to ban them! The ordinance specifically says that you must provide PROOF of you residence at registration, and it specifically says that will be done by showing your driver’s license or the other things it lists, such as utility bill with your name on it. It specifically says that police cannot require anything else to prove your residence — and I take that… Read more »

Hi Anonymous Nobody:

Could you post the part of the ordnance that “seems to ban them.”? I’m very curious, and very interested in anything I can do to legally make their day unpleasant.

Thanks in advance.

Actually, Q, I have pointed that out in previous threads, but seemed to get little traction I can’t even find those posts now, so I will be happy to give it here (although I wish I could find/link to my previous, explained post). This thing is so voluminous it takes a ton of time to find the same clauses again. That language is in the 290 section at the link below and is what 290 says must be provided at registration in those circumstances (I want to find the more generalized requirements of what must be provided at time of… Read more »

That clause is setting the legal standard for proof of residence, and it is not including compliance checks in the standard.

If you find a lawyer to file suit in this regard, I want to join in. I’m sick of these checks. Law says I’m supposed to register ONCE per year. Essentially, this is random stop and frisk for former offenders, without probable cause.

count me in too.

I’m in also. Been looking for a civil rights lawyer with no luck. Let us know. The more the merrier.

Hi Anonymous Nobody: Thank you for posting this. I didn’t see anything about compliance checks either. Now I’ll be cooperating even less when they come over since someone needs to make sure they uphold the laws they have sworn to uphold, yet make every attempt to skirt around; that’s how I’ll view and present my dissent. Now that you, Joe and others have started posting this type of valuable information I’m starting to feel safe in believing that the cops don’t have a mandate, let alone a law that says they are to do compliance checks. I haven’t seen anything… Read more »

If it does ban the compliance checks, then they should get a warrant, if there is suspicion. Trouble is the system acts as if we are always guilty, always trying to get away with something. It does need a lawsuit and a judge to weigh in. We are not on probation anymore if we completed the terms, and should be be treated with dignity that follows obeying the rules. A lawsuit against this form of harassment is needed.


Try going to Mexico for a vacation. We may have done the time and paid the price but we don’t have full rights by any means.

Do I look forward to heading to the police station with my walker on my 85th birthday (should I make it that long) for the year indignity of being photographed and fingerprinted?

No I do not.

Hi Tim:

If the ordnance does ban compliance checks that might explain why the cops are so quick to stand down if the think you know even a few of your rights.

I am up for my driver’s license renewal in less than a month and have an appointment with the DMV on Thursday. It has my wife’s address that I spend two nights a week at (which is a secondary registered residence in another city but same county). My driver’s license from years ago still has this address. I currently live at a hotel for 3 weeks and then check out and check back in the same room number after a weekend as they don’t allow people to stay there for more than 28 days straight. Should I put this address… Read more »

Personally, I think you’re making things too way too complicated. Use either of your registered addresses.
You can always change it anytime you have a new permanent address online at:
If you’re still concerned, call the office where you register and ask their advise.
Make note of the person you talked to, their title and the time and date.
Good luck on the motions you file.

Maybe you can get a PO Box and use that on your license? I seem to recall I had a California ID card (not a license) that I had used a PO box on. This was early 90’s and I was subject to registration at the time. You don’t want to make it look like you are willfully trying to deceive, and a PO box would clarify your wife’s residence is not necessarily your residence. Also, beware of some very tricky wording in the law that says “where you regularly stay regardless of the number of nights” or something to… Read more »

Hi 290 inNocal

I think you have to report both addresses. Don’t quote me on that, but I’m pretty sure that’s the way it is. Take a look at this. I’m sure you’ll find your answer in here; somewhere!

Ever wonder why things are the way they are? The registry, public loathing, etc? This is an interview with Chris Hedges, he explains things rather well. VIDEO

go to time

7.06-manufacturing consent, manipulated by emotion; We are victims of this by
way of the registry, compliance checks, etc.

I didn’t watch the entire video and some may not agree with his views; but this is a thought provoking interview none the less.

I don’t know if this is the right place to mention this, but it’s the closest I come to getting a compliance check. I was forced to be homeless during my time on parole, as many now are. I completed parole with no violations or added time. Since then, I have chosen to remain homeless rather than get a place because living out of my van does have a few advantages, such as not putting me or my family on the map to be targeted by vigilantes. Another advantage is that, in 5 years of registering as homeless, I have… Read more »

I note, a comment about what you were saying, and what some other registrants say they have been told. There seems to be some idea that a registrant must be in their registered address after dark. No, they do not have to be there — even if they are a transient. That location simply has to be their actual residence, but there is no specific time of day or night that they are required to be there, nor do they even have to be there every day (how could daily presence even be possible if they are registered at multiple… Read more »

Hi td777: It really sucks that people are put in your situation because of what is essentially a lie. If I was in your situation I would just say “I sleep over at such and such location every night”. Then when the cops start their whining that you weren’t there when they wanted to harass you I’d say something like I must have been at the store, a friends, in transit, whatever. There is no law that says you have to spend your life waiting in one place in case the cops want to stop by to see if your… Read more »

I disagree, Q. NEVER elaborate, never expound. Always say the least possible. You never have to explain, and it is only going to be to your detriment to do so. Every syllable you utter gives them ammunition. Don’t explain, just say goodbye and close the door, or walkaway if you don’t have a door to close. It is illegal for the to grab you and make you stop — unless they have probably cause, which they don’t in this situation.

Hi Anonymous Nobody:

I know you are right. But sometimes situations don’t lend themselves to what you are saying. Believe me; When the situation to just shut them down comes along you can be sure I’ll do that. I’ve been considering ways to instigate this situation. I’ll probably just say “yes, I live here and I don’t want to talk to you because I’m in compliance.”

Could we file a RTO on ALL law enforcement from doing a compliance check?

Next time I register, He is going to tell me ” I m coming over tomorrow to make sure you live where you are”
I m going to tell him.” Im not going to be home tomorrow.”

Rather than tell him you are not going to be home, tell him you are giving formal notice that no one from the police department is to enter your property, including the walkway to your door, under penalty of trespassing. You might want to also tell them that you ALREADY have proven your residence to them under the legal status established under 290 (you must provide PROOF of residence when you register), and no further proof is required, and that 290 even prohibits them from requiring more (meaning a compliance check).

Hi nk:

You could tell him you have plans and if he want’s you there when he goes to check up on you he will have to make an appointment so you can fit him into your calendar. See how he likes it. LOL!

I was reading this article and found it pretty disturbing… In it the police found many sex offenders not home but gained entry anyhow to conduct a compliance check.. It seems that many law enforcement treat the “Compliance Check” as some form of “extended” parole or probation… I hope and wish that there was some sort of lawsuit or act of God that destroys that idea in California before it becomes rampant.. It should be simple, send a form by mail to the address and have the resident fill it out and mail it back to confirm or something… Read more »

“During the check, they found several offenders not home.
But went inside anyways to determine if they were in compliance.”

What do you do when you have no abilities as a journalist? Go find a sex offender story.
Most of your readers won’t realize that you’re uneducated and too dumb to care.

It should have read, something like: However, they were allowed inside by relatives to make sure the registrants do reside there, by seeing their bedroom, looking for mail addressed to them, prescription bottles with their name and address on them and etc.

And what kind of grammar is: But went inside anyways?

I could hear banjos playing as I read that article…but I digress. 🙂

? Just a personal note: I’m originally from Appalachia and I do love bluegrass music, friends. So ease up on the banjo criticism, please. Thanks. ?

As with any musical instrument it requires talent. I was told the banjo is among the hardest to play.

I was just visited (for the 2nd time this year) by an officer doing a compliance check. He asked me to step outside, read if my information was correct and sign it. Standing inside of the door, I questioned why I needed to sign the piece of paper. He said I was required to do it or a warrant could be issued. I signed the paper but asked for his business card. I’m in San Bernardino County (high desert area). I had knowledge, but verified later, that signing is voluntary. The few calls I made after, not one person could… Read more »

As many of us have discovered, the law enforcement community can pretty much make us juggle chainsaws while we’re on probation or parole. If you aren’t on paper, the only thing they can force upon you is what’s required under PC 290. Interesting to see if this is some sort of agency policy on the part of whatever department this jabroni works for, or if he’s just on some power trip of his own. However the threat that a warrant could be issued is flat out an abuse of power. At the very least a citizen’s complaint should be filed… Read more »

Thank you! I tried to be fair and understand he was just doing his job. I’m sure he didn’t want to be there as much as I didn’t want him to be there. I have not been under parole or probation for a few years now. My anger comes from what you said, the abuse of power. I knew I didn’t have to sign it and I stood up, he clearly had a problem with that. Through my whole mess, I’ve tried to take a higher ground but it’s difficult when an officer already has you pegged and they HAVE… Read more »

An update to the compliance check from Dec. 17. I went in for my annual on Jan 4. The person in charge of registration informed me that she notified the sergeant of my complaint & said that it was addressed in a staff briefing. I asked her to have the sergeant call me. He did. He reiterated what she told me, with a little more detail. He was professional & polite and I hope the issue was really addressed. But truth be told, I just don’t trust cops..and I have enough reasons to. Probably just won’t open a door again… Read more »

Cops lie to make it easier for them to do their jobs.
I’m sure many Gestapos had no personal pleasure in deceiving Jews to peaceably get onto the trains either.

This compliance check thing is not lawful, it needs to be challenge.

This is clearly a serious issue that affects the quality of life for RCs and their families. My husband has just a few months left on his probation, and after the last search of our home, I am so traumatized that I can’t imagine having officers knock on our door whenever they feel like it for the rest of our lives.

Janice, is there any way you would be willing to take this on?

Jd, in your situation where he is on probation doing what I am about to say may be a bit dicey, but once he is off ALWAYS film every interaction you have with law enforcement. Carry a camera of some kind with you at all times. Also, once he is off paper you are in no way obligated to speak to the police. You don’t have to answer the door and never let them in your home unless they have a warrant. There are tons of videos on youtube about this. I know this doesn’t help you much in the… Read more »

There has been some great comments of late on compliance visits of late that I cannot seem to find, but nonetheless, I did find this one thread and wanted to add this article for review and comment. One of the recent commenters on this topic laid out a two-prong way to not answer questions by LE when they are stopped in public on a compliance check. Maybe that can be used when they arrive at your house and your are not on paper, maybe not. Point being, looking at what the gentleman in the article below went through, I post… Read more »

RE: The Washington Post article Very clever article. Mostly because it completely glosses over the ultimate outcome of NOT talking to the police and focuses solely on the unsuccessful lawsuit that was subsequently brought against the police. What was Alexander suing the police dept for ? Violating his 5th Amendment or assault and battery by police? We don’t know. But that is not the issue- the issue is , despite being handled rudely by the police because he refused to talk to them, was he ever convicted of anything? Probably not ( or the article would have stated that) Yes,… Read more »

@Nondescript: +1 and well stated.

I was always anxious about Compliance Checks because the LEOs typically come banging on my front door first thing in the morning as I am just getting into or out of the shower, in the midst of shaving, etc. Then I had one of those lightbulb-overhead moments and it occurred to me to simply place locks on my fence gates each night! (Duh, right?) Result: A detective doing a routine Compliance Check (because apparently my City’s police detectives have nothing better to do) recently called me to verify registration information, stating “I stopped by a couple of times this week,… Read more »

Yes! You successfully “moved” the edge of your curtilage to the fence. At least the LEO is wise enough to know it’s a 4th Amdt violation to cross the fence.

Well done, sir.

Well, here we are again, a year later, I receive a phone call from a detective who is conducting “compliance checks” and asks if I will send him a copy of a recent utility bill or similar document to confirm my residency. (Leave aside that my paying the utilities for any residence in no way confirms that I reside there.) He became irritated when I asked if he also confirms the residency of those previously convicted of bank robbery, assault, etc. He shifted to his “voice of authority” to ask if I really wanted to “do this the hard way”… Read more »

David ~ What State are you in? I know these compliance checks are not really legal or mandated in the first place, but if these people think they are above the law and conduct them anyways, it would definitely be better by mail than in person.

I am in southern California.

It seems as if “compliance checks” aren’t too much of an issue for most people. But I feel like no one should ever allow them. Simply because. The Registries are not acceptable and that’s the end of the story. Therefore, people who are forced to be listed on them should do what they are FORCED to do (by “law”, at the point of a gun) and allow nothing further than that. If you allow them to do “compliance checks” then you are giving them permission to operate outside of the law. You are telling them that it is acceptable to… Read more »

On second thought, if Det. “Hardaway” wants to do this “the hard way”, that’s okay. It means him getting off his butt, driving to my house, finding all gates locked and no entry or way to knock on my door….. I think it will be the “hard way” for him, not me. (But I do hate that they receive even one extra penny of taxpayer funds to support their harassment efforts.)

David ~ We are in Southern CA, too, and we never had a mail in compliance check. We have gotten 2 in person visits over a time span of maybe 9 years. What is strange is that you are not obligated to answer any questions once off paper, and that should apply to mail in inquiries as well.

@ S_ W_ C_:. Thank you for that reminder. 👍

Recently, some folks have posted about U.S. Marshals joining your local LEOs to conduct Compliance Checks. Well, I heard this segment on NPR radio today and it might help to explain the presence of the U.S. Marshals:

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x