Sunday, May 08, 2011

You don't have to register for that!

Janine Cox won in State v. Fredrick, No. 102,848 (Kan. April 29, 2011), obtaining an affirmance of the district court’s dismissal of the complaint in a Montgomery County prosecution for failure to register under the Kansas Offender Registration Act, K.S.A. 22-4901 et seq.

The KSC described the facts of the case as follows:
On May 12, 1994, Fredrick was adjudicated a delinquent in the state of Minnesota, based principally upon his commission of acts designated in that state as criminal sexual conduct. The allegation was that when he was age 15, he touched the vagina of a 5-year- old child. Pursuant to Minnesota law, Fredrick was required to register in that state as a "predatory offender" for a period of time, ending on June 19, 2018.

At some point in time, Fredrick moved to the state of Kansas, albeit the record is unclear as to when the move occurred. What we do know is that on December 29, 2008, when Fredrick was 30 years old, the Montgomery County county attorney charged Fredrick with a severity level 5 person felony [for failing to register under KORA].

The district court granted Fredrick’s motion to dismiss the complaint, finding that Mr. Fredrick was not required to register in Kansas under KORA. The State appealed the decision.

On appeal, the State argued that the overarching tenor of KORA reflects an intention that those persons with a juvenile adjudication in another state who move to Kansas must be required to register in Kansas for the same length of time that was required by the adjudicating state. The KSC rejected this argument, noting that K.S.A. 22-4906(i) states that a person “who has been convicted in another state, and who was required to register under that state's laws, shall register for the same length of time required by that state or Kansas, whichever length of time is longer.” The court noted that “convicted” is not the same as “adjudicated” and so held that the statute did not apply to Mr. Fredrick. Thus, the court affirmed the district court’s dismissal.

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