If you’ve been accused of a sexual offense in Massachusetts, you need an effective and aggressive criminal defense lawyer to protect yourself against severe penalties such as prison time, fines, and registration as a sexual offender. Even sex crimes that are considered “low level” offenses can warrant sex offender registration and a stigma that can negatively affect your reputation, relationships, and community standing.
The following are the common sex crimes that are punishable by registration as a sex offender:
- Statutory rape
- Date rape
- Sexual harassment
- Indecent exposure
- Indecent assault and battery
- Child pornography
- Enticement of a child under 16
- Open and gross lewdness
In Massachusetts, there are three levels of sex offenders. Offenders are classified based on their risk of re-offending and the degree of danger they pose to the public.
Here are the three levels of sex offenders in detail:
- Level 1 Sex Offenders – Have a low risk of re-offending and pose a low degree of danger to the public. The information of Level 1 sex offenders cannot be accessed by the public, but only to certain law enforcement and government agencies
- Level 2 Sex Offenders – Have a moderate risk of re-offending and pose a moderate degree of danger to the public. The information of Level 2 sex offenders who were classified after July 12, 2013, can be accessed by the public.
- Level 3 Sex Offenders – Have a high risk of re-offending and pose a high degree of danger to the public. The information of Level 3 sex offenders is publicly available.
The length of time that a sex offender would be required to register depends on the specific offense for which he or she was convicted. Many require registration for 20 years from the date of conviction, while the most serious offenses—especially those against a child—results in lifetime registration.