PA’s "sexually violent predator" process ruled unconstitutional

More changes could be coming to Pennsylvania’s sex offender registry laws after an appellate court ruled the state’s process to declare a sex offender as a “sexually violent predator” unconstitutional. 

The Superior Court decision in a Butler County case found that the process — the designation carries lifetime registry and counseling under the state’s Megan’s Law — should not be undertaken post-conviction. The current practice of a review by the state’s Sexual Offender Assessment Board and a subsequent hearing with a trial court judge ruling on the board’s assessment is not legal, the court found.The decision could spur a series of appeals by sex offenders previously deemed “sexually violent” and may force state legislators to rewrite the state’s Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (SORNA). 

Naturally, the decision has caused some to become rather apoplectic. Read more here.

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