Monday, August 8, 2016

Virginia Forces 16 Year Old to Register as Violent Sex Offender (for Life) on Public VSP Registry for Crimes that Don’t Mandate Juvenile Registration

I rarely post followers/supporters email’s or stories for many reasons that I won’t go into at this time. 

But about 2 weeks ago I received an email that bothered me so much I immediately shared the details with the Virginia Legislators and Administration and then made two requests to change Virginia law. 

As I finish my 50 State Juveniles Sex Offender chart  hoping to post it later this week with an action item I’ve decided to share the email I received two weeks ago. 

The below has been edited to protect the sender’s identity: 

Ms Devoy 

I would like to thank you for your webpage.  It has been very informative.  Our son, who is 16, was placed on the Virginia Sex Offender Registry in ________ and is still currently in DJJ, hoping to be home by _________.  My wife and I are completely devastated and worried about his future.   

My wife found your post with the link leading to the on June 9th and we were able to submit comments before the deadline.  Thank you for this.   

I cannot believe he will pay by registering for the rest of his life for something that happened a week after his 16th birthday.  We are here for him and always will be because the challenges he is facing (college, career, social) in young adulthood and beyond are scary and seem hopeless.  I have heard the defeated and hopeless words come from him.  We keep encouraging trying to find bright spots but it is hard.  He really won’t feel the impact until he is released.  He is doing what he is supposed to do and taking advantage of what is offered there.  Even the staff and parole officers know he is a "fish out of water".   

These young people do not deserve to pay for the rest of there lives.  We let drug dealers and persons that have caused fatal accidents while under the influence out of jail with no registry.  Why are teenagers singled out for their lives?  If they have paid their debt, than they should be allowed to continue with growing up and become productive members of society. 

I would like to offer any help that I can.  This is such a new and complicated subject matter for us, we really don't know what to do.

Thank you again for the work that you are doing. 

In Virginia registration as a Sex Offender for a juvenile is supposed to be decided by the judge for ONLY THREE crimes Rape, Sodomy and Object Sexual Penetration. Any Juvenile mandated to register in Virginia is classified as Violent (as opposed to Non-Violent) which makes them a ‘Lifer’ with no opportunity to ever be removed. 

Some Virginia Delegates and Senators have been to know to claim while attempting to increase juvenile registration mandates at the annual General Assembly session that......... only the “worst-of-the-worst juveniles convicted of one of the “Big 3” crimes are given the label Sex Offender in the Commonwealth. 

I decided to look the 16 year old up expecting to find one of the “Big 3” crimes but instead he was convicted of:
Ø       18.2-67.3           Aggravated Sexual Battery
Ø       18.2-386.1        Unlawful creation of image of another
Ø       18.2-374.1         Production, publication, sale, financing, etc., of child pornography; presumption as to age
Ø       18.2-374.1:1     Possession, reproduction, distribution, solicitation, and facilitation of child pornography; penalty 

Aggravated Sexual Battery is NOT supposed to be a registerable offense for juveniles in Virginia. 

A child produced and possessed child pornography; this is NOT how the Virginia Child Pornography statutes were intended to be used.  

Remember this chart……..
A 16 year old has been treated as an adult and will forever be a “Violent” Registered Sex Offender in Virginia. This means the Commonwealth’s Attorney AND the Judge in that jurisdiction exceeded what Virginia law specifies. 

If there are any other juvenile siblings living in this 16 year olds household, when he is released from DJJ he will be prohibited from returning home so he will not have the support of his parents; he’ll be banished from his home. 

As a juvenile RSO he may not be able to finish high school and most Virginia colleges will not admit him.  

Without an education he will never have a career where he can work in an office, he’ll be forced into low pay, public sector work; such as fast-food, convenience stores, grocery stores and cheap labor. 

And as we know from research on this issue as a juvenile RSO the chances he commits suicide in the next few years are extremely high. 

So when a Virginia Delegate or Senator, the Virginia Attorney General, the Secretary of Public Safety or even the Virginia Governor claim that Virginia ONLY registers juveniles for the worst 3 Sex Crimes in the State and that’s why the State doesn’t create a private Registry for the juveniles and that’s also why they are prohibited from EVER being removed from the VSP Registry……………… will now know that that’s a lie! 

The Virginia State Police (the official monitor and manager of Virginia RSO’s) does NOT track the number of juveniles placed on the VSP Sex Offender Registry? This means the number of children each year who have been mandated to publicly register as Violent Sex Offenders for life and the actual crimes they were convicted of are unknown.  

I will be posting an action item in the near future for followers to contact their one Virginia Delegate and one Virginia Senator having to do with juvenile Sex Offender registration and I want everyone to remember this case when you do. 

Mary Devoy