According to the Legislature’s Office of Program Policy Analysis and Government Accountability, the number of sex offenders in Florida has increased dramatically in recent years, culminating in a staggering 23,813 registered sex offenders in Florida communities in 2012, an increase of 28 percent since 2005. Even as the number of offenders who cannot be found by law enforcement has decreased, going from 1,259 in 2005 to 693 this year.
Florida sex crime laws can be complicated, sometimes subjecting one to the penalties associated with committing a sex crime, even though one did not know one is breaking the law. Similarly, if one accuses someone else of a sex crime and does so falsely, that innocent person may suffer detrimental penalties they should not suffer, particularly when they are not properly defended.
Sex offender registration is a system in the United States administered in different capacities through each state, designed to allow government authorities to keep track of the current residence and activities of sex offenders, including those who have completed their criminal sentences. In most locations, including Florida, if one is convicted of and is required to register as a sex offender, that information is made available in the registry to the general public via a website or other means.
The Sex offender registry allows anyone to search for anyone listed on the Florida Sex Offender registry, Simply by enter their address and ZIP code. The registry then gives a full list of sex offenders in that person’s area. Information provided includes:
– Current Address and Map
– Current Offender Status
– Source of the Information
Florida has an ankle monitoring system in place for some of Jacksonville’s sex offenders. An ankle monitor or tether is a device that at timed intervals, that sends a radio frequency signal containing location and other information to a receiver. If an the individual wearing the anklet moves outside of an allowed range, the police will be notified. Ankle monitors were built to be resistant to tampering and may alert law enforcement of any attempts to remove the monitor, such as cutting the conductive band which will cause a circuit break.
Electronic monitoring can be set up as “active” or “passive.” Active monitoring is designed to give real-time reports of violations. Passive monitoring provides violation reports to the appropriate officer the next day. Almost all states use the active monitoring method.
The most common Court arrangement for ankle monitor usage will be where the anklet sends the radio frequency signal to a fixed location receiving unit in the offender’s residence. The residence unit uses either land-line or other form of telephone service to send the information to a service center computer. If the offender is not at the residence during the period specified, an alert is sent to the service center and the supervising probation or parole officer.
The Judge has the discretion to choose specific probation requirements for particular defendants. In cases like these, increased pressure from the State, society, and other forces within the community to more strictly monitor sex offenders coupled with the number of those convicted of sex crimes growing rapidly but disappearing slowly from the registration map, a Judge may decide just this option.
A court may force the offender to pay the cost of the electronic monitoring services, which can be in excess of $5 per day. If the court finds that the defendant is indigent and unable to pay, it must waive the costs.
One in a situation such as this should obtain an experienced Jacksonville sex crimes defense attorney to fight for one’s case and ensure one’s rights, defenses, and options are known and protected. One cannot fight this battle alone. With the help of an experienced attorney, one can be sure that this mistake will be whited out of one’s life and become a thing of the past.
The Forbess Law Firm has been aiding clients who face criminal charges in Jacksonville for years and are here to provide aggressive criminal defense to anyone accused of a crime. If you or a loved one require a Jacksonville criminal defense lawyer, contact our firm today. We are available through our website or by calling us at 904-634-0900.
Additional Source: Number Of Sex Offenders In Florida Increases Dramatically, NorthEscambia.com