An important public service that the government can provide to parents is the easy access to an online database of local sex offenders. Until recently, very concerned parents and other parties had to rely on print flyers circulated via local newspapers and police departments. Thanks to ever advancing modern technology, valuable tools are now within very easy reach of virtually anyone who seeks the most recent details regarding those who may pose serious public safety hazards.
Tennessee Sex Offenders Registry offers top-notch access to essential data
Tennessee’s Bureau of Investigation (TBI) has delegated oversight responsibility for the Sex Offender Registry, which is essentially designed as a centralized database to provide free public access to all localized sex offender registries statewide. The Sex Offender Registry is searchable by a subject’s legal name, last known address or alias (es). Perhaps the Registry’s best aspect is detailed search results with items like photos, vehicle ownership data and physical descriptions. There’s even a map tool available to make locating a sex offender’s current residence a snap.
Caveats regarding authorized use of statewide Tennessee Sex Offender Registry
Pursuant to applicable state statutory provisions, members of the public prohibited from utilizing Sex Offender Registry data for retributive purposes or enhancing punitive legal sanctions against registrants. Cited examples include but aren’t limited to stalking, threatening or harassing registrants or their families.
Furthermore, TBI explicitly disclaims any implied warranty of Sex Offender Registry completeness or accuracy. This official disclaimer continues by disclosing that some information contained in the Registry was obtained directly from offenders, although much of such data are public records.
Users who feel any data contained therein is inaccurate are urged to notify the TBI via its toll-free Sex Offender Registry Hotline at (888) 837-4170 or via email. Hotline hours of operation are:
Monday through Friday: 7:00 a.m. – 8:30 p.m. CST
Saturday & Sunday: 7:00 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. CST (excluding holidays).
Peculiar Tennessee legislation twists lead to possible Sex Offender Registry termination
It’s very important to note many controversial “gaps” in applicable state law that allow certain sex offenders to escape mandatory lifelong registration. For instance, sex offenders whose sentences expired at least 10 years prior can petition for permanent removal from Tennessee’s statewide registry. The same rule holds for offenders convicted as juveniles while residing in another state beyond Tennessee’s borders. These and other “loopholes” let some potentially dangerous past offenders go unlisted in Sex Offender Registry files.
Likewise, it’s vital to recognize that many individuals compelled to permanent sex offender registration under penalty of law are anything but such characters. A prime case in point is where a 19-year-old Florida man was convicted of “sexting” for texting nude pics of his girlfriend to a few male friends after the couple had quarreled. Despite circumstances that surrounded his “crime,” the young man will pay a dear price for the rest of his life.
The bottom line for sex offender registries in Tennessee or elsewhere is there are inherent limitations to always take with a huge grain of salt – to avoid guaranteed recipes that bake tragic disaster.