Colorado Sex Crime Attorney Blog

Tim’s Story: Lifetime Sex Offender Registration for a Small Offense in Denver, Colorado

Posted by Kyle B. Sawyer | Mar 04, 2014 | 0 Comments

Learn more about lifetime sex offender registration in Colorado.
We're going to tell you another story. This is because stories illustrate what we deal with every day: Good people who do one stupid thing, and are punished for life. As experienced criminal defense attorneys in Denver, we are contacted daily by real people who are suffering because of unjust sex crime laws in Colorado. One of these real people is a man (we'll call him Tim) who called and inquired about Deregistering as a Sex Offender – C.R.S. 16-22-113. Unfortunately, Tim is subject to lifetime sex offender registration. Here is his story. While the circumstances around this man are fictional, the crimes and consequences he must deal with are real:

A High School Crush Gone Wrong

Tim went to Arapahoe High School in Centennial, Colorado. Like many high school boys, he had a crush on a girl – her name was Amanda. One day at a party in Greenwood Village, he finds himself on the dance floor with her. The lights are flashing, the music is loud. In the moment, he grabs her butt as they dance. She doesn't seem to mind at the time, but one of her more conservative friends saw and voices her disgust to Amanda, who feels guilty. Amanda tells her father what happened, and the police get involved. As a result, Tim is adjudicated for Unlawful Sexual Contact – C.R.S. 18-3-404. This is a misdemeanor offense in Douglas, Adams, and Jefferson County which requires sex offender registration.

A Night at the Movies Gone Wrong

Tim's life is difficult – being a registered sex offender in high school is not easy. But, Tim graduates and enrolls in Denver University. One night, after a long week of studying, Tim goes to an adult movie theater. The police raid the theater, and he is arrested for public masturbation. This ends with a conviction of Indecent Exposure – C.R.S. 18-7-302. Indecent Exposure is a misdemeanor which also requires sex offender registration.

Unable to Move On: Lifetime Sex Offender Registration

When Tim called us earlier this week, he inquired about his ability to Deregister as a Sex Offender. Being a registered sex offender is extremely difficult. Not only is it difficult to get a job or find housing, the social stigma is intense. The rules regarding registration are complex and difficult to follow. So, it makes sense Tim wants to put his past behind him. Now he is married and has children – he has moved on, but is still tethered by the requirement he register as a sex offender. I took a look at the statute and saw a provision which made me concerned:

“The following persons shall not be eligible” for deregistration, but “shall be subject for the remainder of their natural lives to the registration requirements specified…any adult who has more than one conviction or adjudication for unlawful sexual behavior.”

To put it simply, this means Tim will be required to register for the rest of his life (both Unlawful Sexual Contact and Indecent Exposure are classified as “unlawful sexual behavior). I am bothered by two things:

  1. That two misdemeanor convictions can result in sex offender registration for life, and
  2. That one of them was an adjudication as a juvenile.

Usually our courts allow juveniles to move on from their past – but not when it comes to deregistration. It doesn't seem right to us that Tim will still be registering as a sex offender when he is 65 years old for touching a high school crush. Our government has given sex crimes a “super crime” status which doesn't allow people to move on with their lives.

Request a Free Consultation

Don't assume you will have to register as a sex offender for the rest of your life. Contact us today for a free consultation about deregistration as a sex offender. Our lawyers will meet with you and discuss the possibility of discontinuing registration. Contact us at 303-830-0880, or submit the
Get Help Now” form. Together, we can protect your future.

Image courtesy of artur84/

About the Author

Kyle B. Sawyer

I have a passion for defending others in criminal cases. I am able to empathize with my clients and understand their emotions and fears. I have a unique perspective on the criminal justice system and I understand what it feels like to be wrongly accused of a crime.


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