Sex Offender Laws in Utah
A sex offender is an individual that has been charged with sexual misconduct that can include but is not limited to assault, misdemeanors, voyeurism, illegal photography and possession of child pornography. The State of Utah has increased in recent years the amount of time a charged sex offender must spend in jail. However, the State has not made any changes to the statute that allows for successive sentences for offenders facing multiple convictions. While a majority of these laws involve people with no prior records, if an individual is found to have previously been charged with sexual misconduct, the penalties they incur will be harsher.
What are the categories of sex offenders in Utah?
Utah has provisions for two categories of offenders, who if charged and convicted with sexual misconduct, must face penalties and register with the State.
An Offender must register for ten years if:
They have been charged with voyeurism, kidnapping, forcible sexual misconduct, kidnapping, illegal sexual relations with a minor, human trafficking, sexual abuse, improper behavior with a child and more as dictated under the Utah Department of Corrections.
A Utah sex offender must register for life if:
They have been charged with aggravated kidnapping, forced sexual assault, kidnapping of a child, rape or object rape, sexual exploitation of a minor and other grievous offenses as listed by the Utah Department of Corrections.
Requirements of a Sex Offender:
Sex offenders in Utah are divided into two groups.
- Group A is for offenders whose misconduct was against children. These people have more stringent requirements compared to Group B
- Group B is for offenders whose misconduct was against adults
Individuals from both these groups must:
- Participate in a court-mandated therapy, the completion of which can only be determined by the therapist
- Adhere to curfews and the use of electronic devices for monitoring
- Avoid buying or possessing any items that may invoke sexual stimuli without permission from the parole officer
- Get their employment approved by the parole officer
- They cannot move out of their residence without permission from the parole officer
- Comply with randomly assigned lie detection tests
- They must not either directly or otherwise interact with the victim or their family unless they have been granted permission to do so by the Board of Pardons and Parole
- Comply with providing blood for DNA banks
In addition to this, offenders under Group A:
- Cannot interact with anyone who is not of legal age
- Visit a place where children gather
The time frame to register as a sex offender in Utah:
Even though every State has its registry, registration falls under the federal jurisdiction and is not limited to state boundaries. An individual who was charged as a sex offender outside the State of Utah must still register with the State upon entry into the State, even if the duration of stay is not permanent. The period within which offenders must register is ten days. Registering as soon as possible is always the recommended course of action.
Failure to comply:
In the State of Utah, any failure to comply with the legal system can extend the period of imprisonment for a year, and also the offender can also be charged as a criminal. Section 77-41-107 belonging to the Utah Code of Criminal Procedure dictates that failing to register or providing inaccurate information upon registration are both criminal offenses.
If found guilty, the individual could be charged with a Class A Misdemeanor where they face incarceration for three months, or a Third Degree Felony, where the minimum period of incarceration is three months. If charged, the individual faces supervision by a parole officer for a year at least.