In a recent ruling, the Colorado Supreme Court ended lifetime sex offender registration for twice-convicted minors. In People in the Interest of T.B., the Court assessed the constitutionality of this sex offender registration requirement under the Colorado Sex Offender Registration Act and found that it constitutes cruel and unusual punishment. The Court stated that this requirement violates the Eighth Amendment.
Are you required to register with the sex offender registry? Chances are you have experienced negative consequences as a result. Registration requires the registrant to provide a lot of personal details. Because the registry is open to the public, anyone has access to this personal information. This opens up the potential for discrimination, threats, and unwanted bias. Getting court approval to deregister can have a positive impact on a person’s ability to obtain employment, find housing, and reduce emotional distress.
If you are being charged with a sex crime, then you are likely filled with dread and anxiety over the severe penalties that you face. Sexual crimes are among the most aggressively prosecuted in the state of Colorado, and often times there are mandatory protocols that district attorneys must follow that prevent them from dropping charges, even when leniency or common sense might otherwise dictate such a course of action.
In Colorado, sentences for adult sexual offense crimes vary greatly depending on the specific facts of the case. Was force used? Was the actor in a position of authority over the victim? Or, was the victim incapable of appraising the situation? These are just some of the circumstances that can have a great effect on an actor’s sentence if found guilty of a sexual offense in Colorado.
Legislators in the Colorado House will soon be taking up consideration of a bill that would increase penalties for those who are convicted of certain sex-related offenses, according to a recent article in the Aurora Sentinel.
The bill, House Bill 14-1260, demands harsher penalties for people convicted of “a felony sex offense involving intrusion against a child who is under twelve years of age” when the convicted person is at least ten years older than the child, according to the language of the bill. The Aurora Sentinel describes it as a version of “Jessica’s Law,” a 2005 Florida statute that sought to track people convicted of certain sex offenses closely and to increase the penalties that came with these convictions.
A 36-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of having sex with an underage girl. According to a KKTV news report, Colorado Springs police say he was engaged in a sexual relationship with a girl less than half his age since the summer of 2012. The alleged victim is 18 now, but she was 17 when the alleged relationship began. The age of consent in Colorado is 17, but according to the Colorado Springs Police Department, the man “was in a position of trust over the victim.”
The age-of-consent laws in Colorado are complicated and confusing. Colorado is one of nine states that have a legal age of consent of 17. This means that under some circumstances, a 17-year-old can consent to sexual activity with someone over the age of 18. A 17-year-old cannot, however, legally consent to a person who is in a position of trust. This means that a 17-year-old Colorado resident cannot legally consent to a relationship with any person:
A 37-year-old Colorado Springs man was arrested in Florida on suspicion of creating child pornography with a 5-year-old girl. According to a Fox 31 news report, the man was arrested near Tampa. Officials executed a search warrant of his Colorado Springs mobile home back on June 11. They removed several computers and other digital media items during their search. In July, they examined the items and allegedly uncovered sexually explicit images of a 5-year-old girl. Once they decided that the Colorado Springs mobile home was the site of the crime, they arrested him and charged him with sexual exploitation of children. He is being held in Florida and is awaiting extradition to Colorado.
As is clear in this case, law enforcement officials go to great lengths to arrest individuals suspected of creating, possessing, and distributing child pornography. Colorado Springs police officers and investigators often work with law enforcement officers in other jurisdictions to track down individuals responsible for the exploitation of children.
Colorado Springs police have apprehended a man who they suspect sexually assaulted a woman at gunpoint. According to a KOAA news report, the alleged assault occurred at a home on Westmeadow Drive in Colorado Springs. Officials say two men entered the woman’s home, assaulted her at gunpoint, and stole her belongings. The authorities conducted an investigation and made one arrest. The man has been charged with sexual assault, first-degree burglary, and aggravated robbery.
Under Colorado Revised Statute 18-3-402: “Any actor who knowingly inflicts sexual intrusion or sexual penetration on a victim commits sexual assault if:” he or she “causes submission of the victim by means of sufficient consequence reasonably calculated to cause submission against the victim’s will.” In other words, it is illegal to have sexual intercourse by force, threat, or coercion.
A 47-year-old man was arrested and charged in connection with a sexual assault near the Hillside Community Center in Colorado Springs. According to a Fox 21 news report, the woman stated she was walking in the area near Hancock Expressway and Fountain Boulevard when the man hit her in the head and dragged her into the creek area. She said the man sexually assaulted her before leaving the area on foot. Police made the arrest a week after the incident following an investigation.
Consequences of Sex Crime Convictions
A sex crime conviction carries serious consequences for anyone in Colorado. In addition to prison time and hefty fines, convicted individuals will also be required to register as sex offenders. This means that they will have to register with local law enforcement frequently and every time they move. Their neighbors can find information about their arrest and conviction by referring to the Department of Justice database. Convicted sex offenders find it extremely challenging to reintegrate into society because they are constantly subjected to scrutiny.