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Sex Offender Registration – Frequently Asked Questions

Which offenses are registerable offenses?

  • Child Molestation 1, 2 or 3  (RCW 9A.44.083, 086, 089)
  • Commercial Sexual Abuse of a Minor (formerly Patr. Juvenile Prostitute) ( RCW 9.68A.100)
  • Communication with a Minor for Immoral Purposes  (RCW 9.68A.090)
  • Criminal Trespass against Children (RCW 9A.44.196)
  • Custodial Sexual Misconduct 1  (RCW 9A.44.160)
  • Dealing in Depictions of a Minor Engaged in Sexually Explicit Conduct  1 or 2 (RCW 9.68A.050)
  • Failure to Register as a Sex Offender (2nd or subsequent felony conviction) (RCW 9A.44.130, .132)
  • Incest 1 or 2  (RCW 9A.64.020(1) & (2))
  • Indecent Liberties  (RCW 9A.44.100)
  • Kidnapping 1 or 2 (If victim is a minor & offender is not the minor’s parent) (RCW 9A.40.020, .030)
  • Possession of Depictions of a Minor 1 or 2 (RCW 9.68A.070)
  • Promoting Commercial Sexual Abuse of a Minor  (RCW 9.68A.101)
  • Promoting Prostitution 1 or 2 (with a prior offense for Prom. Pros. 1 or 2) (RCW 9A.88.070, .080)
  • Promoting Travel for Commercial Sexual Abuse of a Minor  (RCW 9.68A.102)
  • Rape 1, 2, or 3 (RCW 94.44.040, .050, .060)
  • Rape of a Child 1, 2, or 3 (RCW 9A.44.073, .076, .079)
  • Sending, Bringing Into State Depictions of a Minor 1 or 2 (RCW 9.68A.060)
  • Sexual Exploitation of a Minor  ( RCW 9.68A.040)
  • Sexual Misconduct With A Minor 1 or 2 (RCW 9A.44.093, .096)
  • Trafficking 1(RCW 9A.40.100(1)(b)(ii), 100(1)(a)(i)(A)(III), (IV) or (a)(i)(B))
  • Unlawful Imprisonment  (If victim is a minor & offender is not the minor’s parent) (RCW 9A.40.040)
  • Viewing Depictions of a Minor 1 or 2 (RCW 9.68A.075)
  • Voyeurism  1 (RCW 9A.44.115(2))
  • Any felony with a finding of sexual motivation under RCW 9.94A.127, RCW 9.94A.835 (2001) or RCW 13.40.135.
  • Any gross misdemeanor that is under RCW 9A.28, a criminal attempt, criminal solicitation, or criminal conspiracy to commit an offense that is classified as a sex or kidnapping offense under RCW 9.94A.030 or RCW 9A.44.128.  
  • Any out-of-state conviction for an offense for which the person would be required to register as a sex offender while residing in the state of conviction; or, if not required to register in the state of conviction, an offense that under the laws of this state would be classified as a sex offense under this subsection;
  • Any federal conviction classified as a sex offense under 42 U.S.C. Sec. 16911 (SORNA);
  • Any military conviction for a sex offense.  This includes sex offenses under the uniform code of military justice, as specified by the United State secretary of defense;
  • Any conviction in a foreign country for a sex offense if it was obtained with sufficient safeguards for fundamental fairness and due process for the accused under guidelines or regulations established pursuant to 42 U.S.C. Sec. 16912
  • Any Tribal conviction for an offense for which the person would be required to register as a sex offender while residing in the reservation of conviction, or, if not required to register, an offense that under the laws of this state would be classified as a sex offense under this subsection.

 

Which offenses are NOT registerable offenses?

 

The following sex-related offenses are NOT registerable offenses unless they are felonies with sexual motivation or attempted felonies with sexual motivation (see above):  

 

  • Indecent Exposure (9A.88.010)
  • Luring (9A.40.090)
  • Assault 4 with Sexual Motivation (9A.36.041)
  • Bigamy (9A.64.010)
  • Child Buying and Selling (9A.64.030)
  • Promoting Pornography (9.68.140)
  • A first offense of Promoting Prostitution 1 or 2 (9A.88.070, .080) If an offender has a prior conviction for Promoting 1 or 2 and is convicted of a second Promoting 1 or 2 offense, it is registerable.  
  • Sale, Distribution or Exhibit of Erotic Material to a Minor (9.68.060)
  • Patronizing a Prostitute (9A.88.110)
  • Prostitution (9A.88.030)
  • Unlawful Display of Sexually Explicit Material (9.68.130)
  • Allowing Minor on Premises of Live Erotic Performances (9.68A.150)
  • Permitting Commercial Sexual Abuse of a Minor (9.68A.103)
  • Human Trafficking (RCW 9A.40.100)

 

How long does an offender have to register?

 

The answer is found in RCW 9A.44.140.  The duty to register under RCW 9A.44.130 shall continue for the duration:

 

  • For a person convicted in this state of a class A felony, or a person convicted in this state of any sex offense or kidnapping offense who has one or more prior convictions for a sex offense or kidnapping offense, the duty to register shall continue indefinitely.
  • For a person convicted in this state of a class B felony who does not have one or more prior convictions for a sex offense or kidnapping offense, and has not been determined to be SVP (a civil commitment as a Sexually Violent Predator), the duty to register shall end fifteen years after the last date of release from confinement, if any, (including full-time residential treatment) pursuant to the conviction, or entry of the judgment and sentence, if the person has spent fifteen consecutive years in the community* without being convicted of a disqualifying offense* during that time period.
  • For a person convicted in this state of a class C felony, a violation of RCW 9.68A.090 (Communication w/a Minor for Immoral Purposes) or 9A.44.096 (Sexual Misconduct w/ a Minor 2), or an attempt, solicitation, or conspiracy to commit a class C felony, and the person does not have one or more prior convictions for a sex offense or kidnapping offense and the person has not been deemed SVP, the duty to register shall end ten years after the last date of release from confinement, if any, (including full-time residential treatment) pursuant to the conviction, or entry of the judgment and sentence, if the person has spent ten consecutive years in the community without being convicted of a disqualifying offense during that time period.
  •  For a person required to register for a tribal, federal, or out-of-state conviction, the duty to register shall continue indefinitely.  

 

Can an offender be relieved of his/her duty to register before the statutory timelines discussed above?  

 

Yes:  Despite the presumptive timelines for registration, Washington State law permits a sex offender to petition for relief from registration.  

When conviction occurred in adult court:

  • Adult offenders who have been deemed sexually violent predators or were convicted of a Class A felony that was committed with forcible compulsion on or after June 8, 2000, cannot petition. 
  • If the conviction occurred in WA State:  Can petition if they spend 10 consecutive years in the community without a disqualifying conviction.  RCW 9A.44.142(1)(b).  
  • If the underlying conviction is for a federal, tribal, or out-of-state conviction:  Can petition if they spend 15 consecutive years in the community without a disqualifying conviction.  
  • The Court may relieve a petitioner of the duty to register only if the petitioner shows by clear and convincing evidence that the petitioner is sufficiently rehabilitated to warrant removal from the central registry of sex offenders and kidnapping offenders.  

 

When Adjudication occurred in Juvenile Court or crime committed prior to age 18

  • If the crime was a Class A felony and offender was age 15 years or older:  Can petition if 60 months have passed since adjudication or release from confinement, whichever is later; no failure to register, additional sex, or kidnapping convictions/adjudications within 60 months of filing petition; and have not been deemed SVP
  • If the offender was under the age of 15 or if the petition is 15 years and older and crime was not a Class A:  Can petition if 24 months have passed since adjudication and release from confinement, whichever is later; have no FTR, additional sex, or kidnapping convictions/adjudications within 24 months of filing petition; and have not been deemed SVP.  
  • The Court may relieve a petitioner of the duty to register only if the petitioner shows by a preponderance of the evidence that the petitioner is sufficiently rehabilitated to warrant removal from the central registry of sex offenders and kidnapping offenders.  

What factors does the court consider in determining whether relief from registration is appropriate?  

(i) The nature of the registrable offense committed including the number of victims and the   

length of the offense history;

 

(ii) Any subsequent criminal history;

 

(iii) The petitioner’s compliance with supervision requirements;

 

(iv) The length of time since the charged incident(s) occurred;

 

(v) Any input from community corrections officers, law enforcement, or treatment providers;

 

(vi) Participation in sex offender treatment;

 

(vii) Participation in other treatment and rehabilitative programs;

 

(viii) The offender’s stability in employment and housing;

 

(ix) The offender’s community and personal support system;

 

(x) Any risk assessments or evaluations prepared by a qualified professional;

 

(xi) Any updated polygraph examination;

 

(xii) Any input of the victim (the State shall provide notice);

 

(xiii) Any other factors the court may consider relevant

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