LAS VEGAS (CN) – Nevada’s new sex offender laws, which increase offenders’ risk assessment levels by retroactively including any crime with any sexual element since 1956, are unconstitutional, the American Civil Liberties Union of Nevada claims in Federal Court.
The ACLU sued on behalf of seven anonymous people with sex-related convictions who are required to register as sex offenders but are considered to be low-risk.
The new law, signed in June 2007 by Gov. Jim Gibbons, will dramatically change how the state categorizes sex offenders. Offenders are categorized by their risk of reoffending. The new law will categorize offenders by the crime committed – and will lump together any crime committed with any “sexual element” since July 1, 1956.
The new law becomes effective on July 1.
“Numerous people not previously considered ‘sex offenders’ will now fall under the changed definition and will be required to register and subject to community notification and other onerous requirements and limitations,” the lawsuit states.
The ACLU seeks declaratory judgment and an injunction.
The plaintiffs are represented by Margaret McLetchie.