The California sex offenders law is also known as California’s Megan Law. Established in 1996, the Penal Code § 290.46. protects the public from sex offenders.
The law makes sure the general public are aware of registered sex offenders.
The name "California's Megan Law" is from a victim of rape and murder Megan Kanka. Megan, age 7, died at the hands of a convicted child molester living across the street. Her parents did not know that a child molester lived across the street.
Megan’s parents had the local authorities inform the public about sex offenders.
The parent's efforts lead other states to adopt this measure. Now “Megan’s Law” helps protect the public from sex offenders.
Identify Nearby Sex Offenders in California ⮕
The California Sex and Arson Registry manages the primary source of information for sex offenders.
The registry updates the sex offender database with information from local law enforcement.
The registry also informs the general public of registrants that are violating registration. You can aid the registry by reporting any information you may have on a sex offender to your local law enforcement.
Learn and share vital facts and figures about California sex offenders with this convenient infographic.View California Sexual Predator Infographic
Offenses Requiring Registration and Community Notification Under CA Penal Code § 290 (2020):
Tier 1 Sex Offender Registration
- Tier 1 charges require registration as a sex offender for at least 10 years if convicted.
Tier 2 Sex Offender Registration
- Tier 2 charges require registration as a sex offender for at least 20 years if convicted.
Tier 3 Sex Offender Registration
- Tier 3 charges require registration as a sex offender life if convicted.
CAL. PENAL CODE § 290.015
(a) A person who is subject to the Act shall register, or reregister if he or she has previously registered, upon release from incarceration, placement, commitment, or release on probation pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 290.
This section shall not apply to a person who is incarcerated for less than 30 days if he or she has registered as required by the Act, he or she returns after incarceration to the last registered address, and the annual update of registration that is required to occur within five working days of his or her birthday, pursuant to subdivision (a) of Section 290.012, did not fall within that incarceration period. The registration shall consist of all of the following:
CAL. PENAL § 290.45-46 (2020)
CAL. PENAL § 290.45.
(a) (1) Notwithstanding any other law, and except as provided in paragraph (2), any designated law enforcement entity may provide information to the public about a person required to register as a sex offender pursuant to Section 290, by whatever means the entity deems appropriate, when necessary to ensure the public safety based upon information available to the entity concerning that specific person’s current risk of sexual or violent reoffense, including, but not limited to, the person’s static, dynamic, and violence risk levels on the SARATSO risk tools described in subdivision (f) of Section 290.04.
(2) The law enforcement entity shall include, with the disclosure, a statement that the purpose of the release of information is to allow members of the public to protect themselves and their children from sex offenders.
CAL. PENAL § 290.46.
(a) (1) On or before the dates specified in this section, the Department of Justice shall make available information concerning persons who are required to register pursuant to Section 290 to the public via an Internet Web site as specified in this section. The department shall update the Internet Web site on an ongoing basis. All information identifying the victim by name, birth date, address, or relationship to the registrant shall be excluded from the Internet Web site. The name or address of the person’s employer and the listed person’s criminal history other than the specific crimes for which the person is required to register shall not be included on the Internet Web site. The Internet Web site shall be translated into languages other than English as determined by the department.
CAL. PENAL § 290.95 (2020)
(a) Every person required to register under Section 290, who applies for or accepts a position as an employee or volunteer with any person, group, or organization where the registrant would be working directly and in an unaccompanied setting with minor children on more than an incidental and occasional basis or have supervision or disciplinary power over minor children, shall disclose his or her status as a registrant, upon application or acceptance of a position, to that person, group, or organization.
(b) Every person required to register under Section 290 who applies for or accepts a position as an employee or volunteer with any person, group, or organization where the applicant would be working directly and in an accompanied setting with minor children, and the applicant’s work would require him or her to touch the minor children on more than an incidental basis, shall disclose his or her status as a registrant, upon application or acceptance of the position, to that person, group, or organization.
(c) No person who is required to register under Section 290 because of a conviction for a crime where the victim was a minor under 16 years of age shall be an employer, employee, or independent contractor, or act as a volunteer with any person, group, or organization in a capacity in which the registrant would be working directly and in an unaccompanied setting with minor children on more than an incidental and occasional basis or have supervision or disciplinary power over minor children. This subdivision shall not apply to a business owner or an independent contractor who does not work directly in an unaccompanied setting with minors.
(d) For purposes of this section, “working directly and in an unaccompanied setting” includes, but is not limited to, providing goods or services to minors.
(e) A violation of this section is a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment in a county jail for not exceeding six months, by a fine not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000), or by both that imprisonment and fine, and a violation of this section shall not constitute a continuing offense.
CA Penal 290 (1) (A) (2020)
Within 5 working days of release from jail, prison, or institution. If sentenced from outside of an institution within 5 days of the sentence.
Yes, including federal and foreign convictions.
Offenders update registration info annually with local law enforcement within 5 days of birthday; verify address with the Department of Justice.
If guilty of a misdemeanor, failure to register or update is a misdemeanor. If guilty of a felony or have a prior failure, failure is a felony which results in state prison incarceration.
Sex offender registries exist all over the United States as a public safety measure. Not only to protect communities nationwide but also to make it a lot more difficult for offenders to recommit.
There are laws in every state as well as on the federal level that dictate how this information is handled, and the sex offender registries are very useful tools for those that know how to access them. The Califonia sex offender registry is no exception to this, and locating and accessing the California sex offender registry is a relatively simple task.
As it’s been mentioned, sex offender registries are a matter of public safety. The more easily the public can identify sex offenders in their community the more they’ll be able to avoid potential threats.
That being said, this registry being easily accessible to the public is of the utmost priority. If you have an internet connection, finding and accessing this data is now available online. Simply search for California Megan’s Law in your favorite search engine, the registry should appear high in the search results.
Once on the website, you’ll need to agree to the disclaimer on the website. It essentially says that you won’t use the information to harm the sex offenders, and states that using the registry to hurt sex offenders can be considered a charge in itself. Once you’ve made it past the screen that asks you to agree to their conditions all you have to do is search by your preferred search criteria. The California sex offender registry allows you to search by name, city, or zip code so it’s very easy to find all of the information you need at this point.
Sex offender registries didn’t always exist. They haven’t even been around for 30 years at the time of writing this article. In 1994 the tragic death of a young New Jersey girl made people realize that such a registry would be necessary. The young girl’s name was Megan Kanka, and she was raped and murdered by her known pedophile neighbor. This neighbor was exactly the kind of person that would have been required to register as a sex offender in New Jersey had there been any sex offender registration laws.
Shortly after, in 1996, lawmakers pushed through a bill called Megan’s Law that started the push towards sex offender registries nationwide, and many states began adopting their own version of the law and establishing their own sex offender registries. These were considered to be very important for keeping the public safe because sex offenders tend to have a very high rate of recidivism. Since these laws were passed law enforcement agencies all over the United States have been keeping a close eye on sex offenders that live in their jurisdictions. In most cases, law enforcement will go so far as to verify the information provided by sex offenders to be sure that they really live where they say they do.
There’s no shortage of information about the sex offenders that live in California. All sex offenders are required to register for life, and that means that for life anyone can find out their status by simply accessing the California Megan’s Law website. As long as you know how to navigate the internet this information is always just a search away, 24 hours a day 7 days a week. Whether you’re trying to ensure your own safety or the safety of your family, knowing how to look out for, can make this task significantly easier.
Kids Live Safe put together a comprehensive parents guide about sexual predators and keeping children safe.
This free online eBook includes vital statistics, how to tell if a predator is victimizing a child, and social media and cyber-bullying.