State lawmakers consider changes to the sex offender registry

Committees have until March 16 to take action on these bills

BOSTON, Mass. (WWLP) – The state legislature’s Committee on the Judiciary is taking a closer look at the Sex Offender Registry Board. Right now, the public only has access to information on level two and level three sex offenders. State Representative Shaunna O’Connell (R-Taunton) wants to make information on level one sex offenders available to those who request it from their local police stations.

She told 22News, “No one gets this type of access, and in Massachusetts you can commit the same crime as a level two or three sex offender, but be classified as a level one.”

There are three levels of registered sex offenders in Massachusetts based on the risk to reoffend and the nature of the crime. The Board deems level one sex offenders as those who are the least likely to reoffend. Level two offenders are considered moderately dangerous, and level three offenders are the most dangerous, with a high-risk of committing sex crimes again. Quincy Democrat Tackey Chan wants to update the Sex Offender Registry to include the Facebook, Twitter and other social media profiles of sex offenders.

“If you’re a member of the public and you want to know where your sex offenders are, it is beyond just the physical home and physical workplace,” said State Representative Chan.

New Hampshire is the only New England state to require a sex offender’s social media information.

State lawmakers have until March 16 to take action on these bills.

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