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TN: Judge orders state to remove men from sex offender registry

A federal judge ruled Monday that Tennessee’s sex offender registration act is unconstitutional, at least as it was applied retroactively to two offenders.

The ruling in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee affects only the two men who sued, identified in court documents as John Doe #1 and John Doe #2.

“I think the ruling, while it is narrowly tailored to our clients, does open the door to the possibility of a class action,” attorney Ed Yarbrough said in an interview.

U.S. District Judge Eli Richardson had already ruled in February that parts of the law violated the Ex Post Facto Clause of the U.S. Constitution, which prevents people from being punished by a law passed after their crime was committed. On Monday, he ordered the state to stop enforcing any part of the law against the two plaintiffs and to remove their names from the sex offender registry.

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Watch out michigan judge clem will do the same thing here

@Olin….the lawsuit in Michigan IS a class action. DOES 1 was a “as applied” lawsuit and those 5 or 6 people were removed. We’re way past that point in the process…..unfortunately the majority of the people who make up the class action will remain on the registry for LIFE. Some youthful offenders and people who were lucky enough to get their convictions set aside were the only beneficiaries of the new legislation. Apparently, status conference results from earlier today will most likely result in more waiting. State is still betting on the Betts case and asking for clarification on ability… Read more »

@Josh, thanks for the update, on what’s supposedly going on in Michigan. I got two of Tim’s emails, haven’t checked yet emails since this morning. So basically it’s more sit and wait, for nothing. As far as Betts goes, that case has also dragged on and on, with more filing of briefs. Ii just wish Cleland would shut the registry down, until Michigan and the ACLU get their crap together, but that will never happen. Thanks again for the update.

Josh, yes, thanks for the update. Actually I hate to think about it because the whole thing just makes me sick to my stomach. I can’t help but believe that those fat ass lawmakers in Lansing are just sitting back chuckling to themselves, watching the ACLU an RC you jump through hoops and scramble for crumbs.
And again we sit and wait… For what? Is it possible for the water to get any muddier?

So, one more judge sees that ex post facto is unconstitutional in the registry! Great.
This big ole stinky onion is being pealed one layer at a time.

Whoopie, it doesn’t matter. In the recent case of Whilman VS United States, the sixth circuit found registrants are still obligated to register per SORNA, even if their state removes them (ie, new legislation, court decisions, etc). which sucks, but appears to be the case. Tennesse is also covered by the sixth circuit decision. The Sixth Circuit pretty much went the opposite of what they ruled in 2016 regarding Michigan’s Registry. Being removed from Tennessee’s registry, you are still “stuck” in the system

@Stan:
You seem to misunderstand the concept of dual sovereignty in this country. That means that we citizens have two “rulers,” the State government and the Federal government. So for the Sixth to have held one is still subjected to Federal SORNA even though one is not subjected to a State SORNA is as expected.

I say don’t get too discouraged because if the State SORNI (plural of SORNA?) keep getting chopped down by the courts, I believe the Federal SORNA will eventually get struck, too.

@ Stan: I am not familiar with the Whilman v. U.S. But even if one is still required to register with SORNA, the Federal SORNA Registry does not (yet🙄) have a public website. But, of course, It’s just a matter of time. 🙄

Willman v US

https://mitchellhamline.edu/sex-offense-litigation-policy/2020/08/27/willman-v-united-states-attorney-general-e-d-mich-2019/

Doubt there’d be a Fed Registry. The states are delegated to by law to register fed convictions with their own.

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