Louisiana Court Records
Louisiana Sex Offenses and Why They are Different
Sex offenses are non-consensual sexual acts. Because sex offenses are violent crimes, the attending penalties are equally severe. Depending on the harshness of the crime, or the presence of aggravating factors and circumstances, penalties range from hefty fines to life imprisonment. After a sex offender completes a sentence, the offender must abide by restrictions set by law. Louisiana’s criminal justice system and the Department of Public Safety oversee all processes that pertain to sex offenders in the state.
What is a Louisiana Sex Crime?
Louisiana’s state statutes define sex crimes as sexual acts or sexual contact performed without the victim’s lawful consent. The victim may be unable to consent due to age, intoxication, duress, unconsciousness, force, mental incapacity, or other factors. According to the law, a person is also incapable of giving consent when the person is coerced, threatened, or in police custody. Additionally, children and minors below the age of 17 cannot give lawful consent to sexual acts.
Other aggravating factors may include the offender’s relationship to the victim and the offender’s position of authority relative to the victim. The Louisiana criminal code classifies sex offenses as felonies or misdemeanors, depending on the severity. Upon release or at the end of the offender’s sentence, sex offenders in Louisiana must register in the Sex Offenders and Child Predators Registry.
What are the Different Types of Sex Offenses in Louisiana?
The different types of sex offenses in Louisiana include:
- Sexual battery: Sexual battery occurs when a person touches another person’s genitals without consent or when the offender makes the victim touch the offender’s genitals. The touching may occur directly or indirectly, with any instrument, and with or without clothing (La R. S.§43.1). Other factors that contribute to sexual battery include:
- The victim is less than 15 years old and no less than three years younger than the offender.
- The victim is over 65 years of age does not consent to the act.
- The victim cannot consent or physically prevent the act because of a disability.
- The victim cannot consent due to a lack of awareness or understanding or mental inability, and the offender is aware of the victim’s condition.
Ignorance of the victim’s age is not a defense for the offender. The penalty for sexual battery depends on the severity of the crime or the presence of aggravating factors. Sexual crime is punishable by imprisonment for no more than ten years. The prison term may be with or without parole, hard labor, probation, or a sentence suspension. However, if the offender is 17 years old or older and the victim is less than 13 years old, the offense is punishable by no less than 25 years imprisonment and no more than 99 years with hard labor. The offender must serve 25 years of the prison term without probation, sentence suspension, or parole. The same penalty applies if the victim is incapable of consent due to a physical or mental disability.
- Rape: This refers to sexual intercourse with another person without the person’s lawful consent.
- Felony carnal knowledge of a Juvenile: This happens when a person who is 17 years old or older has consensual sex with a minor of no less than 13 years but not up to 17 years. This offense carries a penalty of about $5000 and imprisonment for up to 10 years.
Some other sex offenses are:
- Molestation of a juvenile
- Sexual battery of the infirm
- Crime against nature
- Indecent behaviour with juveniles
- Oral sexual battery
- Intentional exposure to HIV
- Trafficking children for sexual purposes
- Pornography involving juveniles
- Computer-aided solicitation of a minor
- Unlawful sexual conduct between an educator and a student
- Purchasing commercial sexual activity
- Sexual massage
- Sexual abuse of an animal
Sex Offender Levels of Classification in Louisiana
Louisiana categorizes sex offenders into three tiers:
- Tier I: Offenses in this category are considered low-risk, with little to no chances of repeated offenses. Tier I offenders register annually for 15 years. Some of the offenses eligible for Tier I status include:
- Sexual battery
- Intentional exposure to AIDS
- Felony carnal knowledge
- Crime against nature
- False imprisonment of a person under 18
- Interference with child custody
- Indecent behavior with juveniles
- Crimes against nature
- Tier II: offenders in this category carry a greater risk of repeated offenses than Tier I offenses. Tier II offenders must register for 25 years in the Louisiana Sex offender and Child Predator Registry. Examples of offenses eligible for Tier II include:
- Oral sexual battery
- Enticing a minor into prostitution
- Aggravated crimes against nature
- Inciting prostitution if it involves a person younger than 18
- Aggravated incest
- Pandering if the victim is younger than 18
- Soliciting for prostitutes if the prostitute is younger than 18 years old
- Molesting a juvenile
- Pornography involving a juvenile
- Tier III: Offenders in Tier III are at a high risk of committing repeated offenses. Such offenders are threats to public safety. Offenses in this category are the most serious. Examples include:
- Human trafficking
- Aggravated incest
- Sexual battery of the infirmed
- Trafficking children for sexual reasons
How Do I Find A Sex Offender Near Me in Louisiana?
As provided by La R. S.§542.1.5, upon registration, the Bureau of Criminal Identification and Information must make sex offender information available publicly, including the Sex Offender and Child Predator Registry. Additionally, La R. S.§542.1 requires sex offenders to provide personal information to:
- All the adults in the offender’s residence
- The landlord, lessor, or owner of the offender’s residence
- At least one business or one house within one mile of the offender’s residence in a rural area and within three-tenths of a mile in an urban area
- The school superintendent in the district where the offender lives. The superintendent must then inform all the school principals within one mile of the offender’s residence.
- The superintendent in charge of any playground, parks, or other recreational facilities for children in the area. The superintendent posts notices, including the offender’s photograph, address, name, conviction, and address.
Within 21 days after conviction, the offender must also send clear photographs, details of the offense, name, physical characteristics, date of conviction, and place of residence by mail to everyone living in the area where the offender resides.
Interested parties may also obtain sex offender information from third-party websites.
Louisiana Sex Offender Registry
Upon conviction, La R. S.§542 states that sex offenders must register and provide notification as the law requires. The offender must notify law enforcement if the offender changes address, employment, or other registration details. The length of stay or registration depends on the severity of the offense. The Louisiana Sex Offender and Child Predator Registry is available for free public search. Interested parties may search the registry using:
- Phone number
Records that are considered public may be accessible from some third-party websites. These websites often make searching simpler, as they are not limited by geographic location, and search engines on these sites may help when starting a search for a specific or multiple records. To begin using such a search engine on a third-party or government website, interested parties usually must provide:
- The name of the person involved in the record, unless said person is a juvenile
- The location or assumed location of the record or person involved. This includes information such as the city, county, or state that person resides in or was accused in.
Third-party sites are independent from government sources, and are not sponsored by these government agencies. Because of this, record availability on third-party sites may vary.
What are the Sex Offender Restrictions in Louisiana?
In Louisiana, sex offenders may not:
- Operate any hire vehicle, including buses, limousines, or taxis
- Operate an amusement park ride, if the offender’s offense involves children
- Work in an organization that requires the provision of home service
- Work as an itinerant vendor, peddler, or door-to-door solicitor, or any work that involves any type of selling.
- Own or possess firearms
- Live within 3 miles of the offender’s victim.
- Live within 1,000 feet of a playground, daycare center, or school if the offender’s victim was younger than 13 years old.