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NIJ: Tracking Sex Offenders: Federal Law, Resources Have Led to Marked Improvement of State Registries, But More Work Is Needed

[ – 11/13/20]

Communities want to know when convicted sex offenders are living in their midst. For a quarter century, federal law has guaranteed communities the right to know. In 1994, Congress mandated that all states develop sex offender registries. Two years later, Megan’s Law provided that sex offender information must be made public.

In the ensuing decade, sex offender laws and registries sprang up in all states — but not always with the full impact intended. In some instances, technology deficits limited information sharing across registries and jurisdictions, a synergy vital to tracking mobile offenders. Resource shortfalls strained states’ abilities to keep up with the growing volume of offenders required to register their presence, and with new types of identifying data for offenders. Jurisdictional inconsistency left a patchwork of programs, evidencing a need for national norms.

In the end, the researchers reported many states have run into barriers preventing them from substantially implementing all SORNA standards, due to resource constraints, incompatible state or local laws, a lack of requisite legislative will, or a combination of factors.

Read how they plan to expand SORNA



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While I understand their purpose is to enforce federal law; they are actively ignoring the reality of SORNA. The States don’t like it, the data doesn’t support it, and the Courts are beginning to see it for what it is.

Instead of revisiting the law, they recognize that the states likely will not implement more of the law, and plan other methods to force the issue. I see them asking Congress to formally preempt state law on this issue.

So this “study” is just to support the SORNA expansion, right? It spells it out pretty clearly that what they think is needed is more funding and consistent laws- wasn’t consistency the goal of the expanded language? Great…

@ AnonMom: So you read their report? Doesn’t it read like a Nazi SS report to Hitler about problems being encountered with their “Final Solution”??
The report objectifies registrants as if we are “things” or “its” that need to monitored, surveiled and controlled.

No one has ever said the Feds were the brightest wax coloring book tools in the box.

“The research described in this article was funded by NIJ grant 2014-AW-BX-K003, awarded to University of Massachusetts Lowell. The article is based on the report “Information Sharing and the Role of Sex Offender Registration and Notification” (2020), by Andrew J. Harris (principal investigator), Kimberly Kras (co-investigator), and Christopher Lobanov-Rostovsky (co-investigator). The team also produced an executive summary.” Executive summary is 25 pages and full report is 182. Links for them are within the last paragraph of this article if anyone’s interested.

I live in one of those 24 states where the SO web site does not comply with the federal requirements, thank God. Not being on the web site and outed to the public has allowed me to work, make a decent living, and raise my kids, both of whom are in college. In less than a year my 10 years will but up and off the state registry and no longer under Federal SORNA. Even so, the struggle for me will continue with international travel and other states still requiring I register. It will however be much better for me… Read more »

As long as the Hit Lists exist I promise that I’ll make them worse than worthless. I will be around random children all the time. I was this past weekend. I will be all this week. I’ll also be delivering real consequences this week. These idiot criminal regimes can tell whomever they want where I live. I’ll continue to laugh at them and make it worthless. They can “Register” my vehicles and license plates. I’ll continue to laugh at them and promise them it will never help them with anything. They can “Register” my e-mail addresses and anything else they… Read more »

Amen, brother.
“When injustice becomes law, resistance becomes duty”
I’ve been waiting to hold these fascists accountable for a long time…..


But no one should be waiting to “hold these fascists accountable”. It’s unfortunate, but you might die tomorrow. Everyone needs to act yesterday.

The Hit Lists are not acceptable. I’m not going to allow them to exist in peace. There will always be consequences.

They believe we need more “effective” tracking of people who AREN’T DOING ANY HARM? After a PANDEMIC just hit??? Aren’t they at least glad they survived?! No, this was the way they were always going to be. They were never going to play nice so registrants need to respond in kind. Anyone who submits to new rules every time is selling out. Resist their bs, there should be NO REGISTRY PERIOD. The backers are always playing the victim card. The scum district attorneys have found their perfect sword and they’ve manipulated the agenda so that it’s become untouchable. The legislature… Read more »

When you ar talking about a law enforcement body quite frankly I believe they want to track everyone not just RSOs. They push constitutional boundaries all the time to see how far they can push this agenda and increase arrests. It just happens that RSO is the easiest group to do this to because the people who won’t support say tracking a burglar will still support tracking a RSO. This RSO thing is just a start for LE. Once they can do nearly nothing new with RSO tracking they will slowly broaden tracking to other criminal offenses pointing to the… Read more »

Here’s an idea National Institute of Justice, “Strengthen Science, enhance justice”, science has never supported the registry and study after study shows what a dismal failure it’s been. Sounds to me you are in bed with big government and SMART office. You morons need to be tracked for the harm and waste you cause to this country based on your hate and bloated paychecks.

As in a package being hauled by a major carrier. An object, a thing, a known convict, but never just a human. The didn’t just build a database! They began human indentured servitude to it.

It’s all commercial. “Registration”. “Registry”. Jurisdiction over your name. How do you claim back ownership over your name from Congress’ jurisdiction? Stop receiving benefits and privileges from Washington DC. If receiving benefits and privileges, strawman has, unknowingly, contracted to follow statutes, state and county. I can go on. This is Contract/Commercial Law. Public name ought to go PRIVATE. They won’t stop until you claim your real name. Anyway, Peace.

I wake up everyday and think How the hell did I get stuck in this neverending nightmare Being placed on the registery is a death sentence a slow death sentence. Thank GOD I was really young when I was placed on the registry and hopefully I’ll be Walking away from this phuct up situation in my 30s. SORNA isn’t going anywhere in reality their comeing and the fact that Kamala Harris aka (TOP COP) is gonna be vice president dosen’t look good she’s gonna pass the new SORNA laws in America the Democrats are coming to clean house the president’s… Read more »

“In some instances, technology deficits limited information sharing across registries and jurisdictions, a synergy vital to tracking mobile offenders. Resource shortfalls strained states’ abilities to keep up with the growing volume of offenders required to register …” What a shame!
And in the mean time, we at DOJ and every other LE organization have done our best to disregard all research and data that indicate convicted sex offenders have an extraordinary lead low recidivism rate.
(Oh wait, they author failed to include that information?? What a surprise!)

They also ignore that those resource shortfalls are because of their policies. If you enact new law that adds offences, adds back those previously released from the registry, and tilt the numbers to make most lifetime registrants; that’s your own damn fault.

They should take the newly needed funds out of those lawmakers’ own salaries – maybe then they would learn (assuming they’re capable of learning.)

An objective study would have included the data conclusion for an opposing point. However, when you consider this is probably going to be used for budgetary reasons, the study has to have a positive conclusion which the granting authority wants to see and read. Ignorance is Bliss.

I noticed those comments too David. It occurred to me that if they complain about growth of their case load, we should probably give them even more work. Those on GPS should make sure they don’t stay cooped up at home. Let the police chase ghosts looking for crimes where there are none. Keep frequent data points for them to track, especially internet identifiers, even if you never use them (just make sure you keep the adds and deletes current). Live law abiding lives, but don’t make their job any easier, especially if the local jurisdictions give you trouble anyway.… Read more »

@ anonymous:. Oh, I like that!! If I ever have to submit internet identifiers, I will do my best to constantly be signing up for new sites, new emails, new accounts, etc….. only to abandon them and create new ones for the next month!! Over and over again!!! F#ck the system!! LOL! 🤣🤣🤣

If we ever have to register when we find the opposite sex or anyone attractive, I’d be at the sheriffs office all the time. They’ve wasted my time and I have no problem with taking time away from their coffee and donut breaks.

Check the law to see if you even have to provide internet IDs. Until a few years ago, I provided without knowing better my internet IDs. Then, I learned the law and it was applicable only to convictions with minors. I had my atty call the detective and inform him I would not be providing it anymore since the section of the law did not apply to me. They still have it in their file they show me and ask me for it when I see them, but I happily decline providing it which causes a moment of pause with… Read more »

I don’t know that attacking LE with additional information all of the time will be that useful. Perhaps. But won’t they just hire more flunkies to do the grunt work? You are creating more “work” for them so they need more resources to handle it. Although I do expect that it would be frustrating enough. Where I live there does seem to be a very high turnover in the Registration department. I’ve wondered if they use those “jobs” as a way to punish officers and other people. If you are a bad cop then you have to record e-mail addresses,… Read more »

I have just sent the articles authors the following email: RE: “Information Sharing and the Role of Sex Offender Registration and Notification” Dear Drs. Harris, Kras, and Lobanov-Rostovsky, I read you article regarding the technical shortfalls of sex offender registries. While I understand you may have little interest in “killing the golden goose” that helps fund your work, I have to ask: 1. Do your research and publication efforts ever emphasize the extremely low re-offense rates of individuals convicted of sex offenses?? 2. Do you considered it appropriate for individuals to be permanently identified by what may have been a… Read more »

Did you send this letter twice or just post it twice with changes to the second posting?

That’s a good question. But I just checked and there are no differences between the two. So why not send it to the authors twice? Heck, I’ve contacted some writers every month for over a year. It is good to keep reminding people. I know my local legislators are tired of hearing from me. But guess what? I couldn’t give the first F. The Hit Lists are not going to just exist in peace. As long as they exist I am going to cause people problems. They are going to hear from me until it makes them physically ill. And… Read more »

@ TS: The second email I sent to them noted the two articles identified above by ”
“New Person” regarding the limited value of registries and if they could comment on the billions of dollars spent on registries versus the limited value.
No response.
LE goon enablers.

I wanted to respond to this when you posted it before. But, we all have limited time! I think this is a great letter. Personally, I love the tone. And obviously you point out a lot of great facts that are not even debatable. Everyone should call the Hit Lists the “sex offense registries”. And insist accurate journalists do. Instead of saying “required to register” though, I think people should say “forced to register”. “Required” doesn’t appropriately convey that it is something illegal forced by criminal regimes. The Hit Lists are an act of war. People who are listed on… Read more »

“Required to register under penalty of law” to be more apt. This way it is easily translatable that the act is involuntary. An involuntary act by a free citizen would constitute as “involuntary servitude”, which is unconstitutional.

This “involuntary servitude” does not apply to all citizens, but a very small subset. Military service, jury duty, and taxes are applied to all citizens. There is a very significant difference.

Thanks for thinking about it and responding. Your description is better than just “required to register”. But it is too nice and calm for me. I don’t want to be talking to people and using terms that make it appear as if the Hit Lists might be sensible. I’ve got to stick with “forced to register”. Perhaps even add to it. Maybe “Person Forced to Register by an idiotic, immoral, illegal act of war”? In the past I used “Person Registered for Harassment, Restrictions, and Punishment (PRHRP)”. I like the accuracy of that. If you are listed on the Hit… Read more »

@Will Allen,

You should add the word “Free” before your newly made slogan: “Free person forced to register.”

Can a free person be forced to do something? Like wear a mask in their own home? Or prevented from travel anywhere within the US? Hmmmm…

This pandemic and “force acts” upon people under the guise of public safety will run ahead. Today’s trampling of civil liberties is akin to what the registry is to people who are thought to have regained their rights.

@ New Person: “…the guise of public safety…”… That pisses me off. I watched, in person at the ICU ward, my mother die from this virus. FU.

@ Will Allen: Point acknowledged.

I’ve just sent the following email message to the articles authors: RE: “Information Sharing and the Role of Sex Offender Registration and Notification” Dear Drs. Harris, Kras, and Lobanov-Rostovsky, I read you article regarding the technical shortfalls of sex offender registries. While I understand you may have little interest in “killing the golden goose” that helps fund your work, I have to ask: 1. Do your research and publication efforts ever emphasize the extremely low re-offense rates of individuals convicted of sex offenses?? 2. Do you considered it appropriate for individuals to be permanently identified by what may have been… Read more »


Excellent response! I hope they at least read it, though saying or doing anything about it is unlikely since money speaks more than morals and compassion these days, at least for these folks.

I don’t remember seeing a “right to know” in the constitution.

You must be reading the old Constitution. I’m sure there’s a new Constitution somewhere around here …. you know, the one that law enforcement seems to follow, the one that doesn’t align with all that silly gibberish in the old Constitution. 😒

There is obviously no “right to know”. If there were, Gun Offender Registries would have been created well over 20 years ago. There is no right. There is a right to mind your own f’ing business. There is a right to leave other families alone and stop harassing people. “People” who can’t do that need to pay. People Forced to Register likely crossed that line at some point. They were arrested and imprisoned. The exact same thing should happen to all “people” who support the harassing Hit Lists. They deserve to be arrested and imprisoned. Registry Supporters/Terrorists need to be… Read more »

Someone should find and publish the personal names and addresses of these disingenuous, worm-like beaurocrats who author these reports.

Just like with vigilantes, there are hundreds of thousands of angry sex offenders in the US, looking to hold the nazi regime accountable…

If something happens to them, “oh well! Too bad!” – that’s the same attitude they have toward us.

It’s time to reflect their hate and fear back at them. It’s time to hold them accountable.

-1. I cannot and will not ever support doxing someone.

What is odd is there is this 20-year study on the effectiveness of the registry: An excerpt from that 20-year study abstract: *** “The overall conclusion is that Megan’s law has had no demonstrated effect on sexual offenses in New Jersey, calling into question the justification for start-up and operational costs. Megan’s Law has had no effect on time to first rearrest for known sex offenders and has not reduced sexual reoffending. Neither has it had an impact on the type of sexual reoffense or first-time sexual offense. The study also found that the law had not reduced the… Read more »

The 20 year study is already nearly 12 years old (2008 & 2009 from your two sources); therefore, they may not deem the data valid due to age, but the authors may not have known of these sources or did anyone in the USG office without it being called to their attention. (The intern should’ve though since intern’s are in the basement with a single light bulb and water dripping in the corner when they discover something like this, but I digress…) However, the data is valid and should be sent to the authors for their information (hopefully they read… Read more »

@ New Person: Those were published in December 2008 and January 2009, so they are only 12 years old (not 20 years). Of course, one could argue that, being more recent, the articles are even more pertinent. 🤷🏻‍♂️

My God, if you read their report, it reads like something the Nazi SS bureaucrats would submit to Hitler about the Jews and the “Final Solution”!!
I’m NOT kidding – read it!!

One of the local papers around here publishes notices when registrants are released from confinement into the community. They often will include a line which reads “will be a lifetime member of the sex offender registry” or something very close to that.

They make it sound like something desirable or wanted. I don’t thing that ‘registry’ describes it at all. A registry is something you do for wedding gifts. What we are talking about is something much more than a registry.

“Idiotic, immoral, illegal, counterproductive Hit List” works for me.

It is no longer a price club postcard.

It is now a form of community supervision that is in many ways modeled on probation/parole, but far exceeds the duration of the original sentence.

Word choice is always so important; euphemistic phraseology can hide a multitude of sins. So, it is with the term “registry” . As Worried in Wisconsin (and others) have appropriately pointed out , the word “registry” connotes something pleasant or quaint. So, I am inclined to vote for Will Allen’s suggestion: “Idiotic, Immoral, Illegal, and Counterproductive Hit List.” There’s no white-washing those words. And, again, word choice is paramount, especially when nefarious and underhanded conduct is occurring. Upon my release from prison in Connecticut in May of 2017, I met with my parole agent and she referred to me as… Read more »

Hmmm.🤔 I have emailed the article’s authors twice. No response. Cowards. Just like the Nazis.

Dear David:

I must say that letter of yours up thread is really excellent…I have cut and pasted it so I can save it to my computer…if I ever need some very good words, I’ll used most of yours, with some modifications to mirror the then current situation.

My attitude is…steal from the best…lol…;>}}

Thanks, James I

Thank you, James. I appreciate your comment. This is the 3rd and final email I have sent them: “Drs. Harris, Kras, and Lobanov-Rostovsky, It’s rather disturbing that of the three of you, not one is willing to reply and defend the value of your work. Perhaps it is indefensible? I assume you are aware that, in several recent cases, judges have found sexual offense registries to be unconstitutional (typically citing Ex Post Facto reasons). So between being unconstitutional, being of limited value and effectiveness, and being burdensomely expensive, you nonetheless support sex offense registries?? Unwilling to defend the indefensible?? Sincerely,… Read more »

@David David- Thank you so much for your efforts. And while it’s insulting and craven of the authors not to respond to your pertinent and poignant points, I encourage you to continue to email them until you receive a response. Perhaps you can request a “No Thank You” email from them, if they have no intention of defending their misguided claims. That might prompt them into responding in some fashion. I plan on sending those authors an email, as well. I have begun my own crusade by attempting to enlist the help of a syndicated columnist whose works I began… Read more »

@ underdog (a/k/a Glenn): Where in CT? (I was in Fairfield.)

@ underdog/Glenn: Please contact me at: if comfortable doing so.

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