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Tulsa criminal defense attorney Stephen Cale handles some of the most serious cases. This includes charges of murder or other homicides, sex crimes, and computer-related crimes. If you’re looking for aggressive legal representation, call the Cale law office at 918-277-4800 to schedule your free initial consultation.
In the 2014 case, the defendant was charged with failure to register as a sex offender. State alleged that the defendant was subject to the terms and conditions of the sex offenders registration act that failed to register in July 2012. The defendant had waive preliminary hearing that filed this motion to dismiss and argued that the sex offenders registration act cannot be retroactively applied to him. At a hearing held in May 2013, the judge sustained the defendant’s motion. The state announced its intent to appeal in open court.
In its first argument, the state contends that the judge wrongfully quash the information we determined that the 2004 and 2007 amendments to the sex offenders registration act only applied prospectively. Because the claim is a question of statutory interpretation, it presents a question of law, which the appellate court reviews de novo. Here are the facts.
In June 1994, the defendant was convicted of second-degree rape of a female under 16. The court sentenced him to 10 years in prison but suspended the sentence. At that time, the sex offenders registration act required sex offender to register with the department of corrections prevent his business days of being convicted or receiving a suspended sentence of the person was not incarcerated. The act required offenders to maintain registration with the department of corrections for a period of 10 years from the date of registration.
The period of registration changed in 2004 with a statute that provided that except for habitual or aggravated sex offenders, the person shall be required to register for a period of 10 years from the date of completion of the sentence. The legislature amended that statute again in 2007. The registration act requiring each offender to be assigned to one of three risk levels. Additionally statute at issue was amended to set the registration. For each of the three risk levels. The offender assigned to the risk level of one was required to register for a period of 15 years from the date of completion of the sentence. An offender assigned to the risk level to was required to register for a period of 25 years the data completion of sentence. A habitual offender, aggravated offender, or an offender assigned to the risk level of three is required to register for life.
If either of the amendments applied retroactively, they would require the defendant to register as a sex offender during the timeframe alleged within the information. However, it’s a fundamental rule of statutory construction the intervening changes in the law should only be applied prospectively from their effective date, unless the legislature is specifically declare that they have retroactive effect. The presumption against retroactive legislation is deeply rooted in jurisprudence and embodies a legal doctrine centuries older than our republic. Retroactive legislation presents problems of unfairness that are far more serious than those posed by perspective legislation because it can deprive citizens of legitimate expectations and upset settle transactions.
The legislature declared its intent in enacting the sex offenders registration act. It found that sex offenders pose a high risk of reoffending and implement in the system or registration to protect public safety was necessary. Upon its initial implementation, the legislature provided for the prospective application of the act. The registration requirements only apply to those offenders who were convicted or received a suspended sentence after the effective date of the act. In the 2004 amendment, the legislature did not expressly declare whether the amended registration. Applied prospectively or retroactively. Because the legislature did not expressly declare that the 2004 minute was to have retroactive the fact, the Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals construed the amendment as having prospective operation, said Tulsa criminal defense attorney Stephen Cale.
A statute will not be construed as having retrospective operation in the list intention the legislature cannot otherwise be satisfied. It’s a rule of construction that statutes will be given prospective effect if any other reasonable construction as possible. Never case of doubt, doubt must be resolved against the retrospective effect.
Looking at the many amendments in the present language of the act, the state argued that the legislature explicitly we set forth the intended for the 2004 and 2007 amendments to apply retroactively. However, the Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals said that it cannot consider this language is expressing an intent for the amended registration. To be applied retroactively. Sign language has been in the act since its initial passage and was the legislature’s expression that the act only a prospective effect. Similar language is also always been present within a certain section of the act. The light which have been added at the time that the amendment attrition. Was enacted, the net might’ve taken to be an indication of intent for retroactive application. Because languages always been present in that section cannot be clear there’s an indication of intent as to the 2004 and 2007 amendments.
The state Supreme Court case held that a portion of the sex offenders registration act was intent to apply retroactively. However, the Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals do not agree with this determination. Still, since that case, the Oklahoma Supreme Court is held that the correct sex offenders registration act registration requirements to apply are those in effect when the sex offender was convicted in a, when the sex offender convicted another church section and is Oklahoma become subject to those requirements. As a registration. Effect of the time of the defense conviction had expired prior to the date charged in the information, the trial court properly sustained the defendant’s motion. State also contended that the act did not violate the prohibition against ex post facto laws. The appellate court said that the amendments applied prospectively. Therefore, the issue is moot.
For a lawyer who will aggressively fight for his client who is charged with a serious crime, call Tulsa criminal defense attorney Stephen Cale at 918-277-4800.