The state of Illinois is notoriously tough on sex offenders, and in many cases, judges require people convicted of sex crimes to register on the statewide and nationally available Illinois Sex Offender Registry.
Recently, though, the whole system has come under fire for legislation and loopholes that make it extremely difficult for people to register.
So what happens if you don’t register as a sex offender in Illinois?
Failure to Register as a Sex Offender in Illinois
If you fail to register, or if you fail to renew your registration, the courts can find you guilty of a Class 3 felony. If it’s your second or subsequent time failing to register as a sex offender (or failing to renew your registration), the courts can find you guilty of a Class 2 felony.
The penalties vary, but at the very least, you will be required to spend at least 7 days in jail according to the law. The minimum fine is $500, although judges can order you to pay more.
The law takes it a step farther, though. If someone you know has reason to believe that you haven’t registered and attempts to help you “lay low,” he or she can be convicted of a Class 3 felony.
Who Has to Register?
If you’ll be expected to register as a sex offender, you’ll be told when you’re sentenced. Generally, any person convicted of any of the following crimes will be required to register:
- Aggravated criminal sexual abuse
- Aggravated criminal sexual assault
- Criminal sexual abuse
- Criminal sexual assault
- Predatory criminal sexual assault
Remember, it’s important that you know your rights if you’re accused of a sex crime in Chicago or the surrounding suburbs. Your Illinois sex crime lawyer can preserve your rights and ensure you’re treated fairly throughout the entire process, and he’ll be a valuable resource when you have questions, as well.