Nevada Supreme Court upholds retroactive reclassification of sex offenders

The Nevada Supreme Court has voted 6-1 to uphold a state statute that retroactively reclassifies sex offenders into more restrictive reporting requirements.

The case involves a juvenile offender who served a year in prison in South Carolina for his crime, eventually moving to Nevada after his release in 2000.

He was originally categorized as a Tier-I offender under Nevada’s existing registration system.

But, after the federal government passed tougher registration and reporting rules in 2006, Nevada lawmakers passed a statute to put the state in compliance with the new standards.

That statute resulted in the unnamed sex offender being reclassified as a Tier-II offender, putting him under much tougher reporting and registration requirements. The district court originally issued an injunction preventing enforcement of the stiffer registration rules but the state asked the high court to dissolve that injunction.

The majority of the Supreme Court agreed the statute wasn’t an infringement on the offender’s liberty and didn’t violate his due process rights. It ruled the appellant didn’t meet the burden of proving the state statute unconstitutional and, therefore, wasn’t entitled to maintain that injunction.

The ruling requires the offender to comply with the tougher registration and reporting requirements imposed on a Tier-II offender.


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