MO: Missouri Alliance for Family Restoration advocates for updates to sex offender registry guidelines

Source: baptistnews.com 2/19/24 Sex offender registry guidelines should be updated to more accurately reflect those ex-convicts who remain true threats to others, according to the Missouri Alliance for Family Restoration. MOAFR claims the current registration requirements do not align with the actual level of threat many people previously incarcerated for sex crimes pose for society, and were formulated using outdated and inaccurate statistics. Members of the organization argue the registration requirements should be less strict than they currently are, as to offer “a fair chance to live a productive life…

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MO: Registrants Refused Shelter from Sub-Zero Weather by Half-Empty Salvation Army of Jefferson City

Source: newstribune.com 11/27/23 Nine years into offering an overnight shelter, the Salvation Army of Jefferson City is ready whenever winter weather strikes. “It’s something we’re kind of accustomed to now,” Center of Hope director Brian Vogeler said. Sunday marked the end of the first full week the Salvation Army’s Center of Hope offered cold cots, Vogeler said. About seven people utilized them each night, filling about half the shelter’s capacity. … People on the sex offenders’ list cannot use the cots. Read the full article  

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MO: Federal Judge Sets Trial Date for Halloween Sign Case in Missouri

Source: ACSOL A federal judge today set March 27, 2024, as the trial date for the Halloween sign case in Missouri.  The trial will be conducted before the judge only, with no jury, in Halloween case – U.S. District Court, Eastern District, in St. Louis – Court Order – Trial Setting etc.  The trial will be open to the public. During the trial, the court will consider both whether the Halloween sign requirement violates the First Amendment and whether to issue the existing statewide temporary restraining order (TRO) on a…

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MO: Multiple people arrested in Mid-Missouri, accused of breaking Halloween sex offender rules

Source: abc17news.com 11/1/23 Multiple people were arrested in Mid-Missouri on Tuesday on suspicion of not complying with sex-offender Halloween restrictions.   In Chariton County, Timothy _____, 42, of Salisbury, was arrested on suspicion of several charges. He was charged with failure to register as a sex offender, drug possession, two counts of first-degree endangering the welfare of a child, resisting arrest, and misdemeanors including failure to comply with Halloween-related restrictions for sex offenders and two counts of unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia. He is being held at the Randolph County…

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Missouri good news! 8th Circuit Court of Appeals Upholds TRO, Denies AG’s Motion

In a terse two-sentence decision issued today, the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) issued by the federal district court on Friday.  As a result, registrants in Missouri are not required to post a sign on the front door of their home on Halloween this year. “We are grateful that the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals decided to protect registrants as well as their families and homes,”  stated ACSOL Executive Director Janice Bellucci.  “It was a difficult battle and we won!” The specific ruling today…

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Missouri TRO Challenged by Attorney General

The Attorney General of Missouri has filed a motion for emergency stay that, if granted, would allow the government to enforce a state law that requires registrants in that state to post a sign on the front door of their homes on Halloween.  This motion was filed in the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals after business hours on Friday. According to this motion, the federal district court lacks jurisdiction to issue a statewide Temporary Restraining Order (TRO).  The motion then requests the appellate court either to stop the TRO completely…

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MO: Briefs Filed Regarding Request to Stop Missouri’s Halloween Sign Mandate

Source: ACSOL Briefs have been filed by both parties, in support of and in opposition to, a motion for a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO).  If the motion is granted, registrants in Missouri would not be required to post signs on the front door of their homes on Halloween. Plaintiff’s reply brief was filed today as required by the court.  That brief focuses on the fact that the sign mandate violates the First Amendment because it is compelled speech, required by the government and objected to by the registrant.  The brief…

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MO: Motion for TRO Filed to Stop Missouri Halloween Sign Requirement

A motion for Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) was filed today in federal district court asking the court to stop enforcement of a Missouri state law that requires registrants to post a sign on the front door of their home on Halloween.  If the motion is granted, enforcement of the Halloween sign requirement could be stopped statewide. “It was important to make this request today so that the court could issue its ruling prior to Halloween,” stated ACSOL Executive Director Janice Bellucci, who is now the lead attorney in the case. …

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MO: Hazelwood man’s Halloween displays were lavish. A sex offender law forced him to quit

Source: stltoday.com 10/9/23 ST. LOUIS — Thomas Sanderson’s Halloween festivities were a neighborhood tradition. For more than two decades, the Hazelwood resident put together a “lavish display” featuring animatronic figures and creatures, lights, music, fog machines, a bonfire and — of course — candy. But on Halloween in 2022, a half-dozen police cars descended upon Sanderson’s property and asked to search his home. Sanderson had been convicted of a sex offense in 2006, and police argued he had violated a state law that prohibits people on the sex offender registry…

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ACSOL News Alert: Federal Lawsuit Challenges Missouri Halloween Sign Requirement

A lawsuit was filed in a federal district court this week challenging a state law in Missouri that requires registrants to post a sign on the front door of their home on Halloween.  The plaintiff in the case, Thomas J. Sanderson, was arrested last year for violating that and other requirements of the state law at issue. The basis of the legal challenge is the First Amendment that not only allows citizens to speak but also protects citizens from compelled speech which has been defined as a requirement to utter…

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MO: Missouri governor explains why he vetoed bill that included Blair’s Law

Source: kctv5.com 7/6/23 JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (KCTV) – Missouri’s governor has vetoed S.B. 189, which included Blair’s Law to increase the penalty for celebratory gunfire, but he explained his reasons for doing so in a letter. Blar’s Law was named after 11-year-old Blair Shanahan Lane, a Kansas City girl who was killed by celebratory gunfire on July 4, 2011. According to a press release, Gov. Mike Parson vetoed the bill due to the following provisions that were included: “Section 610.140 – could allow criminals convicted of sexual offenses, including sexual…

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MO: Nearly 30 years after guilty plea, Boone County woman may have sex offense record cleared

Source: columbiatribune.com 4/11/23 A nearly 30-year-old sex offender case is coming back to Boone County. It is not to decide the offender’s guilt or innocence, but whether changes in law meant they ever were required to register as an offender in the first place. The main reason the case is coming back to Boone County is so that Department of Mental Health records can be accessed to determine if Liana _____, formerly Liana M. Bradford, completed the required treatment programs to clear her record under the Tier 1 offender parameters…

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MO: Sex offenses bill package heard in Senate Committee

Source: missourinet.com 4/26/23 Missouri is reviewing whether to update its sex offender registry requirements for those who are convicted of committing crimes against children and the mentally disabled. A Senate committee is considering the public safety bill, sponsored by Representative Justin Hicks of Lake St. Louis. “It amends the sex offender list to ensure that individuals that have committed child sex crimes are classified as tier three offenders, which would equal a lifetime registration requirement,” he says. “It codifies the language from that was rolled on in January from the…

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MO: MO Supreme Court sends Boone County sex offender case back to circuit court

Source: komu.com 4/4/23 JEFFERSON CITY — The Missouri Supreme Court ruled Tuesday to send a Boone County woman’s case back to circuit court after she said she should be removed from the sex offender registry. The 4-3 decision by the Court reversed the circuit court’s judgment and sent back the case for further proceedings.  Read the full article  

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MO: Proposed Missouri Violent Offender Registry

Source: missourinet.com 1/23/23 State Rep. Lane Roberts, R-Joplin, has reintroduced a piece of legislation for the creation of a violent offender registry. Under the bill, those convicted of first- and second-degree murder would be placed on a list similar to the sex offender registry. “The theory here grows out of a contact I had with a constituent actually before I was even elected,” according to Rep. Roberts. “I made a promise to this person at the time that I would file this every year until we either pass it or…

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MO: Police: Registered sex offender arrested after handing out Halloween candy in Hazelwood

Source: fox2now.com 11/4/22 Police arrested a registered sex offender Friday accused of violating state law and handing out candy to trick-or-treaters on Halloween in Hazelwood. Prosecutors have charged Thomas ____ with one count of “failure to comply with Halloween related restrictions for sex offenders.” As part of Missouri state law, registered sex offenders cannot go outside to interact with children, cannot have outside lights on and are required to post a sign stating no candy or treats are available at the home on Halloween night. Read the full article  

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