How does Minnesota’s predatory offender registry work?

Minnesota residents who have been accused of criminal sexual conduct may be required to register with the state’s predatory offender registry.

Most states in the country have some type of sexual offender registry for people convicted of sex crimes. There is also a national sex offender registry. Understanding some of the terms of Minnesota's program is important for anyone who is facing these serious charges.

What is criminal sexual conduct?

The Office of the Revisor of Statutes defines criminal sexual conduct in Minnesota as an act which was initiated by a sexual impulse. Additionally, an act that displays an ongoing behavior pattern associated with sexual impulses can be deemed criminal sexual conduct.

The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension runs the predatory offender registry. It explains that people convicted of criminal sexual conduct can be required to register as a predatory offender. Some of the specifics regarding a required registration include the following:

  • Registration can be required for the length of a probation period or 10 years, whichever is longer.
  • Some people can be required to register for life.
  • The state places no restrictions on where registered predatory offenders can live.
  • Some municipalities have their own restrictions on where registered predatory offenders can live.
  • Probation terms can include stipulations that prevent convicted offenders from living near schools, daycare centers or other facilities.

People convicted of offenses other than criminal sexual conduct can also be mandated to register as predatory offenders. Some of these offenses include possession of graphical images of minors, using minors in sexual acts, soliciting minors for sexual acts or for prostitution and felony indecent exposure.

What happens if a person fails to register?

When a person required to register as a predatory offender fails to do so, additional consequences can be instituted. A first failure to register can result in a full year plus an extra day in prison. A second or subsequent failure to register can result in two years in prison.

Upon release from prison, the original term for registration begins anew. A person originally required to register for 10 years who failed to do so in year eight may have to register for a fresh 10 years after serving time for the failed registration. An additional five-year registration period can be added for each incident of failure to register.

What happens upon release from prison?

Minnesota Department of Corrections assigns people a risk level based upon their believed potential to commit further sexual crimes. A level one rating indicates that the DOC believes there is a low risk of re-offense. A level three rating indicates the highest chance of re-offense. When a level three offender establishes a residence, neighbors can be notified that a predatory offender is in the area.

What should defendants facing sex crime charges do?

Clearly the consequences of a sex crime conviction can extend a very long time. It is important for anyone who has been accused of such a crime to contact an experienced lawyer for help promptly.