Sex crimes are among the most serious types of criminal offenses in Virginia. Along with an array of other consequences — potentially including significant jail time — a conviction for a sex-based offense could result in mandatory registration on a state or federal sex offender list.
Failure to comply with all applicable sex offender registration requirements is a serious legal violation — and it could result in an arrest and additional jail time. Here, our Richmond VA, sex crimes defense attorney provides an overview of the sex offender registration requirements in Virginia.
Who is Required to Register as a Sex Offender in Virginia?
Under Virginia Code § 9.1-902, a number of different criminal offenses require public registration. As a general matter, any offense that is classified as a “sexually violent crime” will require sex offender registration in Virginia. Some of the specific offenses that come with mandatory registration include:
- Sexual battery;
- Aggravated sexual battery;
- Attempted rape;
- Child pornography; and
- Solicitation of minor.
If you are not sure if you need to register, call a lawyer. Make sure that your rights are protected.
While most sex-based offenses are handled at the state level, it is important to note there are also federal sex crimes, some of which come with federal registration requirements. If you are convicted of a federal sex offense, you may be required to register under the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act.
How Does Sex Offender Registration Work?
The requirements for sex offender registration are found under Virginia Code § 9.1-903. As a general matter, a person convicted of a sex crime that requires registration must do so within three days of the date that they are released from prison. Among other things, a sex offender must go to their local police department, where:
- A photograph will be taken;
- Fingerprints will be taken;
- A DNA sample must be provided; and
- The offender must provide up-to-date vehicle information, employment information, and their address.
What Happens If You Fail to Comply With the Registration Requirements
In Virginia, failure to comply with sex offender registration requirements is, in itself, a very serious criminal offense. Depending on the nature of your original conviction, failure to register may be charged as either a misdemeanor or felony offense.
In either case, you can be arrested and sent to prison for failure to register as a sex offender or for intentionally or negligently providing false information to the authorities. If you have specific questions about sex offender registration requirements in Central Virginia, call an experienced criminal defense attorney as soon as possible.
Contact Our Richmond, VA Sex Crimes Defense Lawyer Right Away
At Ali J. Amirshahi Attorney at Law, PLLC, our Virginia criminal defense lawyer has a comprehensive understanding of state and federal sex offender registration requirements. To arrange a free, completely confidential review of your case, please contact us today. From our office in Richmond, we serve clients throughout Central Virginia, including in Ashland, Glen Allen, Mechanicsville, and Petersburg.