Potential Penalties for Failing to Register as a Sex Offender
When a person is convicted of a sex crime in California, they are almost always required to register as a sex offender even after they have served their time. Read on to find out what the potential penalties are for not registering and what the requirements are for registering. Then contact The Mattern Law Firm if you have been accused of a sex crime or of failing to register as a sex offender. You can reach us at 310-342-8254.
You Have 5 Days to Register
When a person is released from jail or prison with the requirement to register, they have five working days to register as a sex offender. They then must register again every year within five working days of their birthday. If they move to another residence they must register within five working days. For a person who moves frequently, this can quickly become a challenging requirement.
The Punishment for Failing to Register Varies Based on Your Criminal History
The charge for failing to register is what’s known as a wobbler offense. Essentially, this means that it can be charged either as a felony or a misdemeanor, depending on a number of factors. One factor will be the charge for which a person was initially convicted. For example, a person convicted of rape may see a harsher punishment for failing to register compared to the punishment a person would receive if their conviction was indecent exposure.
Another big factor in the punishment for failing to register is whether or not the person in question has failed to register in the past. There is a scale the state uses, which results in harsher and harsher penalties with each offense.
A person convicted for the first time of not registering as a sex offender will be charged with a misdemeanor if their original offense was a misdemeanor. This can result in up to one year in county jail. For a person who was originally convicted of a felony, their first time being convicted of failing to register will generally be charged as a felony with up to three years in prison. For either misdemeanors or felonies, if a person is convicted of failing to register a second time, they will face a felony charge that comes with a minimum sentence of one year in prison.
We Will Argue for Leniency
If you did not register as you were required to do, then it is essential to have an attorney there to argue your case. Even if it was an honest mistake and the court has already agreed to charge it as a misdemeanor with the minimum penalty, note that you will still have a first offense on your record. If you make a mistake again, you will be facing up to a year in prison. You do not have to face this alone. Contact The Mattern Law Firm at 310-342-8254 now for your free legal consultation.