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ACSOL’s Online EPIC Conference: Empowered People Inspiring Change Sept 17-18, 2021


Federal SORN Policies


There are few people as uniformly despised as people with sex offense convictions. It’s not hard to understand when you’re inundated with overblown reports concluding that all people on the registry are sexually recidivistic, incurable, and predatory. Overcome by outrage and fear we support any measures to protect against victimization, even if the proposed legislation is a sweeping and draconian measure. The last twenty-five years is a lasting testament to our panicked response to media hysterics and hyperbole, especially at the federal level. During this time, a number of increasingly stringent SORN (sex offender registration and notification) policies to increase the punishment and supervision for people convicted for sex offenses was passed. Below you will find a guide to major federal SORN policies.

Have a question about one of the federal policies listed below?

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Exhaustive, exhausting and depressing. 😕

Hi. I live in TN and would like to move to San Diego in about a year. I am a sex offender here in TN. My charge is ‘sexual exploitation of a minor by electronic means’ (possession of child pornography but not distribution). My offense occurred May 7, 2003. I did 6 yrs. of probation and 9.5 yrs. of sex offender group therapy and went on TN’s sex offender registry on Jan. 26, 2010. I have never re-offended. I understand that in CA my offense carries a requirement to be on the registry for 10 yrs. My question is: would… Read more »

I’m pretty sure I know the answer but I’ll let the well-informed CA people tell you.

I would implore you to not call yourself names, however, or allow anyone else to do it. You should not call yourself a “$EX offender” unless you are one.

People who are merely listed on the $EX Offender Registries are not “$EX Offenders”. They are just people. I like to call them “People who are Registered for Harassment, Restrictions, and Punishments”. PRHRPs.

I hope your move is for good reasons. Personally, if I move, my first choice might be out of Amerika.

I would suggest contacting an attorney in San Diego just to be completely safe. However, as a California resident my understanding is that you must register here if you are convicted of a crime elsewhere that is registerable (?) here, which possession of child pornography is. California currently has one level of registration: lifetime. We are soon to go to a 3-tier system; unfortunately, possession of child porn remains in the highest tier (for some really, really unknown reason) and continues as lifetime registration. The only caveat I can think of is if your offense was a misdemeanor and occurred… Read more »

My understanding of the new tiered law is you have to live in California for at least 5 years, before you can petition to get off the registry.

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x