Sexual Offender Registration laws in Texas has been enforced for the last twenty years. The first sex offender registration laws in Texas went into effect on September 1, 1991. The laws have bee amended every legislation since that time.
The key to registration is whether a the person has a "reportable conviction or adjudication." If they do, they must register as a sex offender or face a new felony offense for failure to register as a sex offender.
Prior to September 1, 1997, the sex offender registration laws were prospective in application. A person convicted of or adjudicated for a sex offense before the law required registration for the offense did not have to register. On September 1, 1997, the registration requirement was made retroactively applicable to any person whose "reportable conviction or adjudication" occurred on or after September 1, 1970 if the person was still in the Texas criminal justice system for that offense on or after September 1, 1997.
Texas Code of Criminal Procedure Article 62.001(5) is the controlling statute and defines "reportable conviction or adjudication" as follows:
(5) "Reportable conviction or adjudication" means a conviction or adjudication, including an adjudication of delinquent conduct or a deferred adjudication that, regardless of the pendency of an appeal, is a conviction for or an adjudication for or based on:
(A) a violation of Section 21.11 (Indecency with a child), 22.011 (Sexual assault), 22.021 (Aggravated sexual assault), or 25.02 (Prohibited sexual conduct), Penal Code;
(B) a violation of Section 43.05 (Compelling prostitution), 43.25 (Sexual performance by a child), or 43.26 (Possession or promotion of child pornography), Penal Code;
(C) a violation of Section 20.04(a)(4) (Aggravated kidnapping), Penal Code, if the defendant committed the offense with intent to violate or abuse the victim sexually;
(D) a violation of Section 30.02 (Burglary), Penal Code, if the offense or conduct is punishable under Subsection (d) of that section and the actor committed the offense or engaged in the conduct with intent to commit a felony listed in Paragraph (A) or (C);
(E) a violation of Section 20.02 (Unlawful restraint), 20.03 (Kidnapping), or 20.04 (Aggravated kidnapping), Penal Code, if, as applicable:
(i) the judgment in the case contains an affirmative finding under Article 42.015; or
(ii) the order in the hearing or the papers in the case contain an affirmative finding that the victim or intended victim was younger than 17 years of age.
(F) the second violation of Section 21.08 (Indecent exposure), Penal Code, but not if the second violation results in a deferred adjudication;
(G) an attempt, conspiracy, or solicitation, as defined by Chapter 15, Penal Code, to commit an offense or engage in conduct listed in Paragraph (A), (B), (C), (D), or (E);
(H) a violation of the laws of another state, federal law, the laws of a foreign country, or the Uniform Code of Military Justice for or based on the violation of an offense containing elements that are substantially similar to the elements of an offense listed under Paragraph (A), (B), (C), (D), (E), (G), but not if the violation results in a deferred adjudication;
(I) the second violation of the laws of another state, federal law, the laws of a foreign country, or the Uniform Code of Military Justice for or based on the violation of an offense containing elements that are substantially similar to the elements of the offense of indecent exposure, but not if the second violation results in a deferred adjudication.
Again, if a sex offender fails to follow the rules of registration, they will be charged with a felony.
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