Any adult convicted of a sexually oriented offense in Ohio is subject to registration as a sexual offender. Ohio has three levels of registration-Tier I, II, or III. An offender's tier designation is entirely dependent on his or her underlying conviction. Whereas prior law required the Court to determine the proper level of registration by looking at several factors including the likelihood of such an offense occurring again, the Adam Walsh Act, which implemented in 2008 in Ohio, removed this ability.
Regardless of the tier level, the offender will be included on Ohio's esorn (Electronic Sex Offender Registration and Notification) internet database. As a result of esorn, any person can look up the offender list online. Additionally, all tiers share the same requirements with respect to where an offender must register (in the county where he or she resides, works, and/or goes to school), how often an offender must register if they leave the county, and what information must be given to the local sheriff when registering (including email addresses, vehicle information, etc.).
With respect to the tier levels, tier III is the most severe level and requires mandatory reporting every 90 days for the rest of the offender's life. It also is the only tier that includes community notification, which is where notice is mailed out to the rest of the community regarding the offender. The Court, however, has discretion whether to waive this requirement.
Furthermore, Tier II requires registration every 180 days for 25 years. Tier I requires registering once a year for 15 years-though an offender can petition the court to remove him or her after 10 years.
The consequences associated with sexual registration are something the best criminal defense attorneys always considers when evaluating a case and especially when plea bargaining with the prosecutor. Trying to resolve a sexually oriented case with the lowest registration requirements possible or even negotiating a guilty plea to a more serious charge that does not carry any registration requirements is always something an experienced defense attorney will consider. If you have been charged with a sexually oriented offense please feel free to contact the experienced criminal defense attorneys at Rittgers & Rittgers for a free consultation.