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Failure To Register as a Sex Offender – California Penal Code Section 290

Penal Code 290 PC - Failure to Register as a Sex Offender in California

If someone is convicted of a sex crime and fails to register as a sex offender as required by law under California Penal Code Section 290 that person may face some strict penalties. Our defense attorneys at Hedding Law Firm are here to help you if you are facing such a situation.

Failure to register may be charged as a misdemeanor or felony, depending on what the underlying sex offense was charged as. A felony conviction may result in state prison for 16 months and up to 3 years.

Sex crimes include but are not limited to sex with a minor, indecent exposure, rape, statutory rape, spousal rape, child molestation, arranging a meeting with a minor for lewd purposes, lewd conduct, oral copulation, and other similar offenses.

An individual charged with a sex offense must register and re-register annually (within five business days of his or her birthday) for the rest of his or her life while residing in California or attending school or working in California.

These violations can be very serious, and the police and prosecutors, in my opinion, really do not like people who have to register as sex offenders.  So, they will do everything they can to twist things to make it look like there's a violation, and they're going to do everything they can to put that person in custody — whether it be county jail or prison.

Another big problem with these registration violations is that usually, you're talking about a second strike case, and the person is looking at a minimum of thirty-two months in prison. The reason why is that most of the time I see these cases, the individual has to register as a sex offender and had to plead to a strike, so now they have a new felony — that Penal Code Section 290 violation — so they're looking at a second-strike case.  That gives the prosecutors a lot of power against that person.

A lot of times I'm seeing these little ticky-tack weak 290 registration violations that really should not be filed.

The person should be warned and told if they do it again, then they're going to have a problem, and the person is really not up to anything sinister, not trying to commit a sex-related offense and not violating Penal Code Section 290 in such a way that it was meant to protect against the reason that we have sex registration for individuals.

Annual Registration for Sex Offenders

This has to do with individuals who are registered sex offenders who have to register every year on their birthday or within five days of their birthday.  They're going to be given their rules when they go in there.

They have them sign a sheet, and that way if they fail to register, they've already got the signature on there.  The person can't claim, I didn't know I was supposed to do that or I didn't know that I couldn't do that.  There are sorts of issues swirling around this Penal Code Section 290 violation – failure to register.

It's usually a huge problem because most people, in my experience, that have to register as a sex offenders probably have a sex crime conviction and a prior strike on their record.  So now, by getting this new case, they put themselves in a new position where they're looking at the state prison.

They're looking at getting the sixteen, two and three-month charge range all doubled.  So, that means the lowest term they could be offered unless the prosecutor is willing to strike the strike — which is difficult to do in a sex crime case is thirty-two months in state prison.  That's a horrible offer, especially if it's some ticky-tack weak violation.

Sex Offenders Moving to a Different Location

I mean some of the police officers, where someone will be transient and won't have anywhere to live, and they'll get them for that.  The bottom line is, if you're a transient, you have to go in there, report that you're transient, fill out their paperwork and answer their questions.  If you do that, you're okay.

But what happens when you switch from transient to you get a location.  You have to go back in there again.  So, please don't do that.  What if you move to a different location?  You have to go back in there again.  I had a buy who moved from one location inside, like a huge apartment complex to another location inside that huge apartment complex.  He thought he was okay because it was all under one address, but no, they came after him for that.

There's all sorts of ways they're going to try to get you for a Penal Code Section 290 violation, and of course they're going to try to get you because they don't like sex offenders — law enforcement, prosecutors, judges — so, they're looking to get you, so you have to make sure you do things the right way.

But, if you are charged with a sex crime violation of you're charged with a Penal Code Section 290 violation and you fail to register when you're supposed to, obviously you want to get an attorney.  I have you come in.  We sit down and lay everything out and we see if there's a defense to the case. We can give you information about how to avoid sex offender registration in a California sex crime case.

Defenses for Failing to Register

If we can make the argument that you didn't realize that you were supposed to do something related to the registration then it's not your fault.  Maybe it's somebody else's fault.  But, a lot of times, as you can probably guess, the prosecutors are going to be blaming it on you, so you want to make sure that if you do have a defense that you have a good attorney that can utilize that defense and put you in the best possible position, make the best argument and really give you an idea if you're charged with a sex registration violation whether you have a chance to win.

You don't want to fight one of those if you're going to lose.  You're going to end up spending a lot of money and end up with a bad result.  So, that's definitely one thing in criminal defense you don't want to do.  If you're going to spend money and hire an attorney and you're going to try to fight the case and you have a chance to win, then that's what you should do.

But, if you don't have a chance to win and the prosecutor has the goods on you, then let the attorney make the strategic decisions that will help you and put you in the best possible position.

It's probably not a good idea to fight the case, anger the prosecutors and anger the judge and then lose the case, because now they're going to be looking to give you the maximum sentence.  So, if you have a sex crime failure to registration violation of Penal Code Section 290 matter pending in Los Angeles County, pick up the phone, make the call and let me help you get out of the criminal justice system as fast as possible.

California's Three-Tier Sex Offender Registration System

Another big thing that is going on in this field that you should know about is, there's now a three-tier system.  So, you yourself should do a little research on that if you have an issue related to that and whether you're going to plead to a case, what the ramifications will be, and then after you do your own research, give your attorney a head ups and let him know.

I have people when they call me, I want to know what you are going to ask about.  What are you concerned about?  And then I will do my own research and my own independent investigation about it, and of course, I'm going to use my twenty-five years of experience, and then we can really get down to the nitty-gritty as to what the case is all about, whether there is a defense to the case or whether we need to plead and we're trying to find some non-registerable offense, or whether it's going to be a registerable offense, but it's not going to be a lifetime registration.

There are so many issues surrounding Penal Code Section 290 and having to register and the registration violations.  But the bottom line is, your best strategy when it comes to one of these situations is to get in front of an attorney, tell him the truth about what happened, and give him all the information.

And then you and the attorney strategize exactly how you will handle the case moving forward.  What type of investigation are you going to do?  What type of mitigation evidence are you going to get  and then the attorney will guide you through the process.

Defense Lawyer to Protect Your Rights

Our Los Angeles sex crimes attorneys are here to help you if you are facing failure to register charges. We will break down all the requirements and specific qualifications to registering and re-registering and see if the prosecution has a valid case against you. We will do everything we can to protect your rights.

In most cases, the prosecutors will assert prior strikes to impose longer prison terms and no probation. We will do everything we can to come against this. Our sex crimes defense lawyers have helped people in similar situations, and we have achieved resolutions of no jail and probation or even a dismissal. We can claim many defenses on your behalf, such as lack of intent or knowledge, to minimize the penalties.

We want to help you protect your reputation and avoid life-altering consequences. We will sit down with you and give you expert legal advice, and lay out all your options for you. Call our failure to register sex crime lawyers and set up a free face-to-face consultation.

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