Panel backs juvenile sex-offender registry bill

 | 01-18-2012


Juveniles who commit a sex crime but aren’t immediately put on the sex-offender registry could be added later under a bill endorsed by a legislative subcommittee.

Del. Ben Cline‘s proposal was sent to the full House Courts of Justice Committee on Wednesday.

Currently, decisions on whether to put juveniles on the registry are made at sentencing. Cline said there’s no way to put them on the registry later if they don’t appear to be making progress in their rehabilitation. His bill seeks to remedy that.

Mary Devoy, executive director of Reform Sex Offender Laws in Virginia, opposed the bill. She said it would allow prosecutors to petition the court to put a person on the registry years after the offense, even if the person did not commit another sex crime.