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Philadelphia Court Upholds Megan’s Law

Thu., Aug. 21, 1997, midnight

A U.S. Appeals Court upheld New Jersey’s Megan’s Law, saying that the requirement that paroled sex offenders register with the state and that the state notify communities where they lived was a permissible measure that offered important protection to families.

The decision from the the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia rejected arguments from public defenders that such registration and notification constituted an unconstitutional extra punishment added retroactively after an offender had served his jail time.

The ruling did ask the state to change procedures to make it easier for sex offenders to challenge what the state’s assessment of the degree of risk they posed.


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