New Rules For Sexual Offenders Begin October 1 - ABC FOX MONTANA NEWS, WEATHER, SPORTS - KTMF/KWYB

New Rules For Sexual Offenders Begin October 1

Posted: Updated:

Many new laws are going into effect October 1 in Montana.  One of them regards sex offenders.

County attorneys will now be able to add a tier level to sex offenders who currently don't have one assigned.

A tier level classifies how likely an offender would repeat their crime.

Currently, more than half of Montana's sex offenders don't have a tier designation, according to Montana's sexual or violent offender registry.

State Representative Jenny Eck, who introduced the bill, said that's a problem. 

"This is a problem because if a sex offender doesn't have a tier designation they default to a tier one status in terms of how they are...what kind of supervision they have," said Eck.

In Montana, a tier one means the risk that offender repeat their crimes is low, for tier three that risk is high and the person is considered a threat to public safety.

Eck said sexual offenders who were convicted and registered before 1997, before the tier system was in place, and offenders who moved from another state are the ones currently without a designation.

She said with this new law, county attorneys can change that.

"It gives the option for prosecutors to say we are really concerned about this offender will you please allow us to do a psycho-sexual evaluation on this person so we can get a proper tier designation," said Eck.

Eck said making sure sexual offenders have the proper designation is really about protecting children.

"It is really important to know who is in our neighborhood," said Eck. "I have two kids and I certainly want to know who is living around me and if a tier level three sex offender is down the street from me I want to know that."

Eck said she would like to see every offender with a tier designation, but it is up to each county attorney to decide what offenders need a new tier designation.

She said that's because it came down to money.

"The problem always comes down to money," said Eck.  "These sexual psycho evaluations are really expensive so we didn't want to mandate it because that would be a really big burden on the counties."

Eck said every offender who would be affected would still get a hearing if the court decides to change their tier designation.

  • NationalMore>>

  • South Korea ferry disaster may cloud Obama visit

    South Korea ferry disaster may cloud Obama visit

    Friday, April 25 2014 1:16 AM EDT2014-04-25 05:16:47 GMT
    President Barack Obama is rejecting suggestions that an Asia-Pacific trade deal is in danger.
    President Barack Obama stepped into the familiar role of chief consoler Friday as he arrived for meetings in South Korea, a key U.S. ally that is reeling from a deadly ferry disaster.
  • 11 kids, driver hurt in Calif. school bus crash

    11 kids, driver hurt in Calif. school bus crash

    Friday, April 25 2014 12:15 AM EDT2014-04-25 04:15:45 GMT
    Authorities say at least 13 people are hurt in a school bus crash in Southern California.
    Eleven middle school students and their driver were injured when a school bus jumped a curb Thursday and rammed into trees in Southern California, authorities said.
  • Nevada rancher defends remarks, loses supporters

    Nevada rancher defends remarks, loses supporters

    Thursday, April 24 2014 11:54 PM EDT2014-04-25 03:54:53 GMT
    A Nevada rancher at the center of a national feud with the federal government over cattle grazing is facing sharp criticism for racist comments he made that were published in a New York Times article.
    A Nevada rancher who became a conservative folk hero for standing up to the government in a fight over grazing rights lost some of his staunch defenders Thursday after wondering aloud whether blacks might have had it...
  • Most Popular

Powered by WorldNow


  • More Features
  • Powered by WorldNow
    All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and Cowles Montana Media. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.