Sex offenses are the most complicated cases in the Colorado legal system. Each sex offense will mandate a number of additional requirements beyond the sentence imposed. One of the most obvious collateral consequences is the requirement that anyone who is convicted of a sex offense is required to register as a sex offender. Depending on what the conviction is, there may be a light at the end of the tunnel. The list of registerable offenses can be found at C.R.S. § 16-22-102. In includes the offenses you would expect, sexual assault, sexual assault on a child, enticement of a child. It also includes some offenses that might surprise you such as indecent exposure (knowingly exposing one’s genitals to the view of any person under circumstances in which such conduct is likely to cause affront or alarm to the other person.)
While registration is a little more complicated than this, generally speaking an offender can petition (ask) the Court to remove him or her from the registry 20 years after release from the jurisdiction of the Court if he or she was convicted of a class 1, 2, or 3 felony. An offender can petition 10 years after release from the jurisdiction of the Court if convicted of a class 4, 5, or 6 felony OR a class 1 misdemeanor unlawful sexual contact. If an offender is convicted of a misdemeanor OTHER than unlawful sexual contact, then it will be 5 years from the person’s release from the jurisdiction of the Court.
The really important thing to know is that there are some offenses that won’t allow you to get off the registry EVER. Any person who is convicted as an adult of Sexual Assault under C.R.S. § 18-3-402, Sexual Assault on a Child, Sexual Assault on a Child by One in a Position of Trust, Incest, Aggravated Incest, or any adult who has more than one conviction or adjudication for unlawful sexual behavior in Colorado or any other jurisdiction. Sexually Violent Predators are also not eligible to petition to deregister.
There are some ways to avoid these consequences. C.R.S. § 16-22-113(d) allows an offender to petition for removal from the registry after successfully completing a deferred sentence or a deferred adjudication (for a juvenile) if the offender has not been subsequently convicted of an unlawful sexual behavior or any other offense that has an underlying factual basis of unlawful sexual behavior. A juvenile under C.R.S. §16-22-113(e), if he or she was younger than 18 at the time of the disposition or adjudication, can petition after the successful completion of and discharge from his or her sentence if he or she has not been subsequently convicted of unlawful sexual behavior or of any other offense that has an underlying factual basis of unlawful sexual behavior.
One thing to be careful of is pleading to an offense that isn’t sexually related if the underlying factual basis of it IS sexually related C.R.S. § 16-22-103(2)(a) says that any person convicted in Colorado of unlawful sexual behavior or any ANOTHER offense, the underlying factual basis of which involves unlawful sexual behavior is required to register. What does this mean? In a nutshell, it means that if you plead to a non sex offense such as Assault in the 3rd Degree, after having been originally charged with a sex offense, the only way you can get rid of this designation as a registerable offense is if the District Attorney stipulates that the factual basis of the offense to which you’re pleading guilty doesn’t involve unlawful sexual behavior.
While we hope you benefit from the information we posted above, it is important to note that we always suggest you contact an attorney to advise you and walk you through the legal process so that you can achieve the best possible result.