If the state convicted you of a sex offense, the law requires you to register as a sex offender. Your registration can drastically affect everything from your employment prospects to your relationships to your future.
Until not too long ago, Missouri had some of the harshest sex crime laws in the nation, and registry on the sex offender list was a lifelong penalty. This was the case regardless of how “innocent” a person’s offense. While the state did allow offenders to petition to have their names removed, petitions were rarely successful. Changes in state laws, however, separate offenders into “tiers” and make it easier for individuals to successfully petition for removal. Missouri State Highway Patrol explains the sex offender tier categories and when and how individuals may petition for removal.
Tier I offenders
Tier I is the least severe of the sex offender registry tiers. If the state places you within this tier, you must register for 15 years and check in with the Chief Law Enforcement Officer on an annual basis sometime during your birth month. After 10 years, and after meeting the clean record removal requirements, you may petition for removal.
Tier II offenders
If the state classifies you as a Tier II offender, you must register for a period of no less than 25 years. You must report to your CLEO biannually — once during the month of your birth and once six months later. As a Tier II offender, you may petition for removal after 25 years, given you meet the clean record removal requirements.
Tier III offenders
Tier III is Missouri’s most severe registration level. As a Tier III offender, you must register as a sex offender for life. You must also report to your CLEO once every 90 days. You do not have the right to petition for removal unless you were a juvenile at the time of the offense, and you meet the clean record removal requirements. Even then, you must remain on the registry for at least 25 years.
A spot on the sex offender registry list can have a drastic adverse impact on your life. If you are on the list and want to petition for removal, you can increase your odds of success by working with a knowledgeable attorney.