I am a registered voter. I am also an ex-offender.
In 1990 I was arrested and charged for a sex-crime. I was tried, convicted, and sentenced to 10-25 years. With “good-time” I served 12 1/2 years.
When I was released, I was advised I would have to register for 10 years as a sex-offender on a registry that didn’t even exist when I was convicted. At that time I was deemed to be only of moderate risk and my whereabouts were only made public to schools and daycare centers, and then only if I moved near to them. I would have been removed from the registry in January of 2013.
However, the law was changed. Suddenly, despite having had no arrests or convictions for anything since my release in January, 2003, a new law went in to effect and was applied to me. Now, I have to register for the rest of my life, in person, every three months; I’m now on the public registry which makes it very difficult to get a job; and I’m told where I can and cannot live.
(The law reads) “Nebraska State Statute 29-4002 declares that sex offenders present a high risk to commit repeat offenses and that efforts of law enforcement agencies to protect their communities, conduct investigations, and quickly apprehend sex offenders are impaired by the lack of available information about individuals who have pleaded guilty to or have been found guilty of sex offenses and who live in their jurisdiction. Because of that, the legislature determined that state policy should assist efforts of local law enforcement agencies to protect their communities by requiring sex offenders to register with local law enforcement agencies as provided by the Sex Offender Registration Act.”
The problem with this is the fact that we don’t present any higher of a risk to commit repeat offenses than any other felon. In fact, aside from persons who have committed murder, we present a lower risk to repeat offenses than all other ex-felons. Therefore, the state is making our lives miserable and difficult based upon a false premise. The state is squandering millions, the federal government is squandering millions, to track and harass citizens who are among the least likely to cause further problems.
So, if citizens like me are going to vote for you, what are you going to do for or against us if elected?