TALLAHASSEE – In at least the third similar case filed by out-of-state residents, a federal appeals court Wednesday rejected an Oklahoma man’s constitutional challenge to being kept on a Florida sex offender registry.
A panel of the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected arguments by Douglas Lindsey, who was convicted in 1999 of statutory rape, sodomy, and lewd molestation in Oklahoma and was required to register in Oklahoma as a sex offender.
In 2009, he successfully requested to be removed from the Oklahoma registry.
Lindsey moved to Martin County in 2011 and did not register in Florida as a sex offender, according to the ruling.
But the Florida Department of Law Enforcement in 2017 informed Lindsey he was required to register.
In 2019, he requested that the FDLE remove him from the Florida registry based on not being required to register in Oklahoma — a request the agency denied.
Lindsey in 2020 moved back to Oklahoma and later filed a federal lawsuit alleging that Florida violated his constitutional rights because it kept him on its registry, which is publicly accessible on the internet.
The Atlanta-based appeals court Wednesday upheld a decision by a district judge to dismiss the case.
“Florida has a legitimate interest in prescribing the manner in which it protects the health and welfare of its citizens from persons convicted of sex offenses,” said the 12-page ruling by Judges Adalberto Jordan, Robin Rosenbaum and Andrew Brasher.