If you have been convicted of a sex crime like possession of child pornography, rape or sexual misconduct online and are required to register as a sex offender as a result, you should already know the toll this requirement takes on your life. Even if you have completed all the other conditions of a criminal sentence, you may find it impossible to move forward if you are a registered sex offender.
This can be especially true as we enter the holiday season. This time of year is often considered to be one of joy and compassion; but for anyone on the registry, it can be a time of isolation, stress and legal complications.
To begin with, sexual offender registration laws in Florida state that a person may be prohibited from visiting or going near certain areas by county ordinance. A person may also be required to comply with strict restrictions and guidelines in terms of living with or visiting children. These restrictions can make it very difficult to spend time with family.
Another obstacle can arise if a person wants to travel for the holidays. According to state and federal laws, a person must still notify law enforcement agents when traveling out of state, even if it's only for a short period of time. There are strict time limits for when a person must report; once that happens, he or she will need to comply with that state's registration requirements.
In some cases, there will be other restrictions in place. For instance, a person may be prohibited from using drugs, drinking or visiting certain websites. But during the holidays, many people struggle with depression and anxiety which can make it easier to give in to temptation or make some dangerous decisions.
This time of year can be enormously difficult for people who are trying to rebuild their lives after a criminal conviction. If you find yourself in a position where you have made a mistake or are unsure about whether you have violated registration requirements, it can be crucial that you speak with an attorney right away. You could end up facing additional criminal charges and it will be essential that you fight to protect yourself, your rights and your future.