North Carolina

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North Carolina is a state in the Southeastern United States. The state borders South Carolina and Georgia to the south, Tennessee to the west, Virginia to the north, and the Atlantic Ocean to the east. North Carolina is the 28th most extensive and the 9th most populous of the 50 United States.

Sex offender laws

North Carolina has rather stringent residency restrictions on sex offenders. Any offender required to register under Article 27A is prohibited from knowingly residing within 1,000 feet of the property on which any public or nonpublic school or child care center is located.

Also, "It is unlawful for an offender registered under Article 27A to access a commercial social networking Web site when the offender knows that the site permits minor children to become members or to create or maintain personal Web pages on the commercial social networking Web site."[1]

According to assistant appellate defender John F. Carella, North Carolina law requires that a sex offender "not only comply with North Carolina law but also (with) all the complicated provisions of the federal law to be removed from the registry." Convicted sex offender Kevin McClain met every requirement listed under a North Carolina law in order to be removed from the state’s sex offender registry. But the court denied his petition because he failed to comply with a federal statute, the Adam Walsh Act that the state law does not specifically mention.[2]

In 2013, part of the statute, which makes it unlawful for registered sex offenders to knowingly be "at any place where minors gather for regularly scheduled educational, recreational, or social programs" was struck down as unconstitutionally vague. Writing for a unanimous court, Judge Cressie Thigpen found that because the term "place" in the statute is not defined, it would not be clear to a reasonable person whether being "kind of close to the parking lot area" of a park or being on an adult softball field that is adjacent to a t-ball field was behavior that would violate the statute. The law "fails to give the person of ordinary intelligence a reasonable opportunity to know what is prohibited, and it fails to provide explicit standards for those who apply the law," Thigpen wrote.[3]

In 2015, Graham County Sheriff Danny Millsaps sent a letter to all registered sex offenders in the area, in which he notified them that they were banned from attending church services.He cited a state law that prohibits sex offenders from being "within 300 feet of premises where minors are supervised".[4]

References

  1. http://ncdoj.gov/Protect-Yourself/Find-Sex-Offenders/SexOffenderRegPrograms.aspx
  2. Bantz, Phillip Getting off North Carolina's sex offender registry is tough.. North Carolina lawyers weekly. (04/26/2013)
  3. Donovan, David Part of sex offender law unconstitutionally vague, North Carolina Court of Appeals rules.. North Carolina lawyers weekly. (01/14/2013)
  4. http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2015/03/north-carolina-sheriff-bans-sex-offenders-from-churches-tells-them-to-go-pray-in-jail/