TRENTON – A measure sponsored by Senator Fred H. Madden and Senate President Steve Sweeney, which would call for the annual review of former sex offenders was unanimously approved today by the full Senate.
“Since 2007, nearly 1300 sex offenders have been released from New Jersey’s prisons,” said Senator Madden, D-Camden and Gloucester, who is a former Acting State Police Superintendent. “Essentially, we are creating a system of additional checks and balances to help ensure that these offenders do not have the opportunity to hurt anyone else. This legislation would increase oversight, thereby helping to increase public safety. “
“You can never have too much oversight when it comes to protecting our families and our communities from dangerous sex offenders,” said Senate President Sweeney, D-Gloucester, Cumberland and Salem. “Bills like this give residents real peace of mind that comes from knowing that law enforcement has a firm watch on offenders who have been released back into the community.”
The Senators’ measure, S-778, would call upon the Attorney General to conduct an annual review of all sex offenders who were released from prison or involuntary commitment within the previous calendar year.
Under current law, an individual is required to register as a sex offender in New Jersey if he or she has been found guilty of sexual assault or has been ordered to register as a sex offender in another state. Newly released offenders must register in the municipality where they reside, within 48 hours of release. Registered offenders who move to New Jersey must register within ten days of arrival. Failure to register is considered a third degree crime, which is punishable by fines of up to $15,000 and five years in prison.
This measure now heads to the Assembly for approval. #