New Jersey lawmakers are promoting a piece of legislation that would set strict standards on where sex offenders can live in the state. Currently, there are no standards that apply to all municipalities. In recent months, local towns have attempted to impose their own standards for setting boundaries for sex offenders, but these local attempts have been struck down by courts.
In New Jersey, Megan’s Law requires sex offenders to register with police after being released from custody. However, a new piece of legislation that is being promoted by New Jersey Senator Fred Madden, would allow individual towns and municipalities to prevent sex offenders from living within 500 feet of certain institutions. These would include child care centers, schools and playgrounds.
According to Senator Madden, his legislation comes in response to several instances in recent months, where courts have struck down local attempts to set limits on where ex-offenders can live. He believes that Megan’s Law does not clearly define the marked boundaries beyond which sex offenders may not be permitted to live after their release from custody. His legislation is apparently a response to that failure by Megan’s Law.
It's not just deciding exactly where sex offenders can live that is a question here. The legislation would also restrict construction of certain buildings and areas close to a sex offender’s residence. For instance, there would be restrictions on building bus stops or childcare centers too close to a sex offender’s residence. The measure has already been cleared by the New Jersey Senate Law and Public Safety Committee. It will now go to the Senate for consideration.In New Jersey, Megan’s Law can severely restrict a sex offender's life after being released from custody. Individuals who have been convicted of certain sex crimes can however attempt to terminate the requirement to be included in the registry. If you have been convicted of certain sex crimes like aggravated sexual assault, you may not be allowed to remove yourself from the registry requirement. The New Jersey criminal defense lawyers at Helmer Paul Conley Kasselman can help you determine whether you are eligible to file a Motion for Removal.