INFORMATION ON MEGAN’S LAW – ADAM WALSH ACT – SORNA
People convicted of certain sex crimes are required to register on the Pennsylvania State Police Megan’s Law Website. All 50 states now have a sex offender registry and the information is shared across the country.
This website registry can be viewed by anyone with an internet connection and will contain your full name.
Learn more about what happens if you are convicted of a sex crime in PA.
Being registered as a criminal sex offender can have debilitating effects on your future and your reputation. Sex offender registration places serious limitations on where you are allowed to live and other basic rights. It can severely impact your chances of getting a job, an education, finding housing, etc.
If you have been convicted of a sex crime, you should be aware that failing to register as a sex offender can mean being sent to prison.
Below you will find information on Megan’s Law, the Adam Walsh Act, SORNA, and the differences between each.
KEEPING YOUR NAME OFF THE SEX OFFENDER REGISTRY
Ketchel Law offers experience in winning tough sex crime cases and takes an aggressive approach to defend your rights, your freedom, your reputation, and your family’s reputation.
If you were charged with a sex crime in PA, we will do everything possible to keep you from having to register as a sex offender, including fighting for a full case dismissal or a reduction of charges.
If a not-guilty verdict is impossible, we will fight aggressively to keep your name off of Megan’s List and your reputation and freedom preserved. There are many defenses to a sex crime and we will take an aggressive approach to build a strong defense.
We offer free consultations and will help you understand the charges brought against you and how to best defend your rights.
CALL KETCHEL LAW TODAY: 412-456-1221 FOR A FREE CONSULTATION
OUR NUMBER ONE GOAL: YOUR SEX CRIME CHARGES DISMISSED OR REDUCED
Megan’s Law was passed by the Pennsylvania legislature in 1995.
Megan’s Law requires police in the Commonwealth to maintain and update a registry of sex offenders. This includes those who reside, work, go to school, or move to Pennsylvania. It also includes anyone who has been convicted, entered a guilty plea, or has been adjudicated delinquent of certain sex offenses.
It is very easy and accessible these days for anyone to track a particular so-called “sexual predator”. A person needs only an internet connection and they can track your every move: change in residence, employment, schools, etc.
ADAM WALSH CHILD PROTECTION AND SAFETY ACT
In July 2006, the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act (often referred to only as the Adam Walsh Act) was signed into law by then-President, George W. Bush.
The Adam Walsh Act was enacted after a boy named Adam Walsh disappeared from a store where he was shopping with his mother. A little more than two weeks later, Adam’s decapitated head was found, but his body was never located. No one was ever charged with the crime.
This story caused national outrage and thus, the Adam Walsh Act was born. The purpose of the Act was to create a uniform set of criteria by which states had to follow when posting sexual offender data on the internet. Perhaps if people in Adam’s community was aware of a sexual predator among them, someone would have identified him/her and Adam’s life could have been spared.
After the Adam Walsh Act took effect, Pennsylvania made some changes to Megan’s Law to make it more compliant with the national sex offender registration requirements.
SEX OFFENDER REGISTRATION AND NOTIFICATION ACT (SORNA)
The Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act, referred to as SORNA, was enacted in 2012 and provides a specific set of standards for sex offenders, sex offender registration, and notification in the United States.
The goal of SORNA was to tighten the network of sex offender registration. Some of the registration requirements include:
- Registration with State police before release from prison;
- Registration in the jurisdiction in which you were convicted/incarcerated;
- Registration where the offender resides, works, and/or attends school;
- Verification of address and photograph required;
- Providing accurate information required;
- Increased the length of time people were required to register.
SORNA also created a three-tier system for sex offenders:
- Tier I: Registration required for 15 years, once per year in person
- Tier II: Registration required for 25 years, every 6 months in person
- Tier III: Registration required for LIFE, every 3 months in person
You can find more information about which sex crimes fall into each tier on the PA Megan’s Law website: https://www.pameganslaw.state.pa.us/InformationalPages/Registration
PROCESS OF REGISTERING AS A SEX OFFENDER IN PENNSYLVANIA
When a sex offender registers in person, they must supply their name, residence, employment, school attendance, and any termination of residence. In addition, they must immediately notify authorities of any change in information such as email address, internet identifiers, telephone numbers, vehicle information, and any temporary living arrangements.
PA made changes to Megan’s Law in 2012 to make it compliant with SORNA. However, since SORNA added crimes to the list required for registration and extended the length of time registration was necessary, many people were required to register retroactively—some for the first time, and others for a longer period of time.
In July 2017, the PA Supreme Court determined that these changes were punitive in nature and therefore were unconstitutional in some cases. The full legal effects of the changes are unknown, however, SORNA cannot be applied to individuals convicted before December 20, 2012. If you were required to register under the new SORNA requirements, you should consult a qualified PA sex crimes attorney immediately to see if it was wrongly applied in your case.
If you have been charged with a sex crime call Ketchel Law for a free consultation. It is our goal to have your case dismissed and if that is not possible, we will fight aggressively to keep your name off of the national registry of sex offenders.
OUR NUMBER ONE GOAL: TO HAVE YOUR SEX CRIME CHARGES DISMISSED
CALL KETCHEL LAW TODAY: 412-456-1221 FOR A FREE CONSULTATION
FREE LEGAL CONSULTATION
We offer free legal consultations to anyone charged with a crime. Call us today to find out how we can help defend your rights.
Learn more about Ketchel Law and Sex Crime Laws in Pennsylvania:
- Pittsburgh Sex Crime Lawyers
- Consequences of a Sex Crime in Pennsylvania
- Defenses to Sex Crimes in Pennsylvania
- Indecent Assault
- Open Lewdness Charges
- Sexual Assault Charges
- Statutory Sexual Assault Charges
- Rape Charges
- Involuntary Deviant Sexual Intercourse Charges
- Online Solicitation of a Minor Charges
- Child Pornography Charges
- Failure to Register as a Sex Offender
Learn more about Ketchel Law:
- Criminal Attorneys Pittsburgh
- Attorney Justin J. Ketchel
- Our Client Testimonials
- View Our Case History / Results
Call Ketchel Law now for a free legal consultation at 412-456-1221.
OUR NUMBER ONE GOAL: GETTING YOUR CHARGES DISMISSED.
CALL KETCHEL LAW TODAY: 412-456-1221