While all criminal charges are serious and carry negative consequences, those related to crimes of a sexual nature are especially severe. All 50 states have adopted what are known as sex offender registry laws. Virginia's sex offender registry laws are among the most punitive in the nation.
If you are convicted of a sex crime in Virginia, in addition to serving out the terms of your sentence which may include months to years in prison, you may also be required to register as a sex offender. Additionally, Virginia is among the states that automatically impose lifetime registration requirements upon registrants.
Virginia Sex Offender Registry Requirements
Individuals who are convicted of a sex crime that requires registration must provide law enforcement officials with the following information:
- Photograph (updated every two years)
- Name and address of employer
- Email address
- Instant message name or alias
Virginia's sex offender registry can be easy accessed by anyone through the Virginia State Police Department's website. In addition to the personal identifying information referenced above, information related to the specific criminal offense and the conviction date are also included in a registrant's profile.
Virginia Sex Offender Registry Restrictions
If you are convicted of a sex crime in Virginia and required to register as a sex offender, you must abide by the following restrictions:
- Prohibited from living within 500 feet of a school, day care or public park
- Prohibited from hanging out within 100 feet of a school, day care, playground or gym
- Prohibited from entering a school or day care or being on the grounds of school or day care
Due to the scope and duration of these restrictions, many registrants have trouble finding jobs, securing housing, participating in family events and living normal and productive lives. If you have been arrested and are facing criminal charges related to a sex crime, it's important to hire a criminal defense attorney.