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What You Need to Know About the Arizona Sex Offender Registry

November 19, 2021

If you are convicted of a sex crime in Arizona, one of the most significant consequences may be the requirement to register as a sex offender. The Arizona sex offender registry can be viewed by any member of the public and can impact where you are allowed to live and work. Not all sex crime convictions require you to register as a sex offender, but the severity of the repercussions of registration is one more reason that is so important to call a criminal defense attorney as soon as you are arrested for suspicion of a sex crime. One thing a defense attorney will do on your behalf is to try to get your charges dismissed or reduced so that the sex offender registry is not part of the potential sentence you could face. If you have been charged with a sex crime, here is what you need to know about the sex offender registry in Arizona.

Who is required to register as a sex offender?

Most people convicted of sex crimes involving a minor, including unlawful imprisonment of a minor, child sex trafficking, and luring a minor, are required to register as sex offenders. Additionally, people convicted of spousal sexual assault, sexual assault, and multiple indecent exposure charges are also required to register. Juveniles convicted of sex crimes may also have to join the registry. Additionally, anyone who moves to Arizona who was convicted of one of these sex crimes in another state must register in Arizona. 

What are the levels of the sex offender registry?

In Arizona, people are divided into three tiers on the sex offender registry. Level 1 is reserved for people whose crimes are considered the least severe, while Level 3 offenders are considered to have the highest risk of reoffending. In some cases, information about Level 1 offenders may not be available to the public, but offenders must still register. There are 19 criteria that are considered when assigning a level to offenders, which includes things like the nature of the conviction, number of sex crime convictions, relationship to the victim, and aggravating characteristics. 

What is required for registration?

After a conviction, people are required to register within 10 days at the sheriff’s office in the county in which they will live. There is a one-time fee of $250 to register. The registrant must also provide electronic fingerprints, a blood sample, mailing address and all names and aliases, all online profiles, and a current photo. Registrants have to re-register annually and provide any updated information, such as new addresses, within three days. Sex offenders on the registry also receive a special driver’s license that must be renewed each year.

Will the community be notified when someone joins the sex offender registry?

For Level 1 offenders, there generally is no community notification performed, though the sheriff’s office may elect to ensure that anyone living with the offender is aware of his or her past conviction. For Level 2 and 3 offenders, the community is notified. This is done through flyers that are distributed throughout the community and directly to schools and to the employer of the registrant. The information may also be printed in the newspaper and posted in local online forums. The registry is also searchable for community members who wish to see if any offenders are living in their areas. 

How long do people stay on the sex offender registry?

This answer depends on the nature of the conviction. Juvenile offenders can typically stop registering at the age of 25, though a judge can decide to end the registration early in some cases after probation is completed. For some charges, registrants can appeal to have their registration end after 10 years, if they have satisfied all their other sentencing requirements. It is also possible for people to petition to have their registration requirements lifted in limited circumstances involving sexual assault of a minor by a person who was under 22 when the victim was between the ages of 15 and 17. However, most people on the sex offender registry in Arizona are required to register for life. 

Placement on the sex offender registry in Arizona is a serious consequence that have repercussions for life. If you are charged with a sex crime, you need an experienced defense attorney on your side who will fight aggressively for your rights. Before you talk to the police, call Janet Altschuler. You can reach our Tucson criminal defense office at (520) 247-1789.

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