If you have been convicted of a sex offense, you will likely need to register as a sex offender for a certain amount of time even after serving any prison sentence that you receive. Ohio law is very strict regarding registering as a sex offender when ordered to do so by a court. Failing to register as a sex offender is a crime, and the punishment that you receive can greatly impact your life. If you are uncertain about your status, or if you are being charged with having failed to properly register as a sex offender, you will need the immediate help of the skilled Columbus sex crimes attorneys of Luftman, Heck & Associates.
You Face Serious Punishments for Failing to Register as a Sex Offender
Failing to register as a sex offender as required by a judge will usually have serious consequences. First-time failures to register properly will result in:
- A fourth-degree felony charge with up to 18 months in prison if your crime was a fourth or fifth-degree misdemeanor or felony
- A felony charge with the same maximum penalty from the underlying conviction if the underlying conviction is a first, second, or third-degree felony
Subsequent failures to register are punishable by a mandatory three years in prison, and the specific punishments can be the following:
- A same degree felony for an underlying conviction of a first, second, or third-degree felony
- A third-degree felony punishable by up to five years in prison based on a failure to not register for a crime that is not a first, second, or third-degree felony
There Are Many Causes for Failing to Properly Register as A Sex Offender
The consequences of failing to register as a sex offender are severe, and they can be inflicted on you whether you purposefully or negligently failed to register or maintain your registration. Accidents happen. Officials or clerks misplace documents, highly-detailed rules are unclear, and harsh punishments can follow. Do not wait to contact an Ohio sex crimes lawyer if you have questions about your status, or if you are arrested for not registering as ordered to by a court.
We’ve seen many people violate sex offender registration laws by failing to do many things such as:
- Register when they move
- Initially register on their own when they are released from prison
- Renew their registration at the appropriate time
- Provide all necessary personal information such as aliases and online usernames
- Register in the county where they work or attend school
- Register in other counties where they may be traveling for more than five days
- Pay the necessary registration and renewal fees
A Lawyer Can Help You If You Have Failed to Register as a Sex Offender
Sex crimes are pursued very aggressively by law enforcement and county prosecutors. After a conviction, your status as a sex offender will be closely monitored. If you neglect to register or if you fail to properly register or renew due to an accident, your freedom could be in jeopardy. Violators of Ohio’s sex offender registration laws are frequently sent to prison. You will need a skilled and compassionate sex crimes attorney to help you if you are arrested on this charge. At Luftman, Heck & Associates, we have years of experience defending our clients, and we understand what you’re going through during this difficult time.