Megan's Law Penalties

Megan’s Law is synonymous with sex offense crimes. This law was enacted following the tragic rape and murder of seven-year-old Megan Kanka in Hamilton, New Jersey in 1994 by her neighbor, who had previously been incarcerated as a sex offender. Megan’s Law requires that the public is notified about individuals residing in their communities who have previously been convicted of sexual offenses.

Megan’s Law Registry

Megan’s law has been instrumental in helping law enforcement officers in preventing re-offenses by previously convicted offenders. For someone facing a crime that requires registration in your community as a sex offender, it is of note that if convicted of a crime that qualifies under Megan’s Law, that you would have to register for at least 15 years in your community. And if you have had multiple offenses that qualify under Megan’s Law, you would have to register for the rest of your life.

New Jersey Code at 2C:7-12-19 details the New Jersey sex offender Internet Registry Law. The Division of State Police posts information on the Internet about eligible sex offenders who are required to register under Megan’s Law. Specific information about registrants who pose a high risk of re-offense and some who pose a moderate risk is made available to the public.

  • A photograph of the individual and when the photo was entered into the Registry
  • Offender’s name and any known aliases
  • Address
  • Megan’s Law sex offenses the registrant has committed
  • A brief description of the offender’s typical method of offense
  • Whether the individual poses a moderate or high risk
  • Description of the offender – to include gender, age, date of birth, race, hair color, eye color, weight, height, any tattoos or distinguishing scars
  • Information about the offender’s known vehicle – to include make, model, year, color, and license plate number

New Jersey Sex Crimes Penalties

In addition to the Sexual Offender Registry requirement, criminal penalties for sex crimes carry stiff sentences as well, resulting in years of incarceration. N.J.S.A. 43-6(c) imposes mandatory minimum periods of incarceration for these crimes. Due to the severity of sexual offenses, the courts set out jail sentences at or between one-half and one-third of those identified by the statute. They are charged as second, third and fourth-degree crimes, and the severity of each is tied to the length of time you would be required to serve.

  • Fourth Degree – up to 18 months in prison
  • Third Degree – 3 to 5 years of jail time
  • Second Degree – between 5 and 10 years of incarceration

Prison time is not the only penalties offenders face. Courts levy various fines as well for these offenses, as prescribed under N.J.S.A. 2C:43-3:

  • Fourth Degree – a fine of $10,000
  • Third Degree – a fine of $15,000
  • Second Degree – a fine of $150,000

New Jersey Sexual Offenses

Some common crimes charged as sexual offenses in New Jersey include the following:

Contact the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall

Sexual offenses are clearly egregious crimes in New Jersey with life-altering consequences for all. If you have been wrongfully charged or accused of any of these or other serious criminal sexual offenses, it’s imperative that you speak with a knowledgeable sex crimes defense attorney immediately. The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall has a team of experienced criminal defense attorneys well versed in the area of sex crimes defense. Call (856) 662-8300 for a confidential consultation to learn how best to proceed.