Frequently Asked Questions About the
Please permit me a few words before answering questions. I have
received many "thank you" letters and e-mails from people who have been
affected from this decision. I have been humbled and honored to
receive the 2013 OCDLA Thurgood Marshall Award for Outstanding Appellate
Advocacy largely as a result of this case. There have subsequently
been several other decisions issued by the Oklahoma Supreme Court that
have expanded this decision.
1. What does it mean?
The short answer is that the Oklahoma Supreme Court has found that
the Oklahoma Sex Offender Registration Act is punitive in nature and CAN
NOT be applied retroactively.
(Read the opinion.) This is a land mark case and is being
talked about across the country!
Click here to see what other people are saying about this decision.
2. How long do I really have to register?
This is a more complicated question. The date upon which you
become "subject to the law" is critical. If you were sentenced by
a court in Oklahoma, then the date of your sentencing is the date you
"became subject to the law". If you were convicted out of state,
the date you entered Oklahoma with the intent to live is the date you
"became subject to the law".
If you became subject to the law before April 26, 2004, you have to
register for 10 years. To be clear, this time does not count time
that you are incarcerated, because you do not register while
incarcerated. Presently, it is believed that the registration
period is tolled during periods of incarceration.
If you became subject to the law between April 26, 2004 and November
1, 2007, you have to register for a period of 10 years following the
completion of your sentence.
If you became subject to the law after November 1, 2007, you are
subject to the "level system".
Level 1 registers for 15 years.
Level 2 registers for 25 years.
Level 3 registers for life.
3. Do I need an attorney to be delisted?
NO!!! Oklahoma Department of Corrections
has the following statement on their webpage:
Sex Offender Registration Ruling On June 25, 2013, the Oklahoma
Supreme Court entered an Order in Starkey v. The Oklahoma Department of
Corrections and Justin Jones as Director, Case No. 109,556. In
accordance with the Starkey decision, the Oklahoma Department of
Corrections is diligently reviewing all registrants on the Oklahoma Sex
Offender Registry and will be removing offenders that are determined to
be subject to the opinion. A Court Order will not be required for
removal of offenders that are subject to the holding in the Starkey
case. Please allow a reasonable time for this review as there
are currently more than 7,000 offenders on the Oklahoma Sex Offender
Registry and each one must be reviewed individually.
4. What requirements of the Oklahoma Sex Offender Registration
Act apply to me?
Paragraph 78 of the Starkey decision indicates that the
requirements that were in place at the time you became subject to the
act affect you. Arguably, any requirement that has been added
since the date that you became subject to the act do not apply to you.
If you have questions about this, I recommend that you consult DOC or
the person handling your registration to see if they agree that a
certain provision does or does not apply to you. If you are not
satisfied with their answer, contact an attorney
to review your case.
5. Does the Federal Law Apply to me?
As of July 1, 2013, the State of Oklahoma has not adopted the Federal
Sex Offender Registration Act. HOWEVER, if you have been convicted
of a listed crime and you travel in interstate commerce, you have made
yourself subject to a Federal requirement to register.
6. What if I was convicted of "Failing to register as a
sex offender" during a time I was not required to register?
If you have been convicted of "failing to register" during a time
that you did not have to register, then you have not actually committed
a crime. Therefore, you may be entitled to post conviction release
to secure your release from custody or from probation.
Additionally, this matter may be removed from your record. If you
have any questions, or believe that you may have been wrongfully
convicted, please contact our office for a free
consultation and case review.