Since March 20, 2006 I have randomly checked the sex offender registry to obtain my abuser’s current address. The county I grew up in consists of small, rural towns connected by small highways and back roads lined with cow pastures and hog farms.
My primary reason for accessing the gut-wrenching sex offender registry through the years has been to see the address where my abuser currently resides. It provides me with the opportunity to decide which route I would like to take to my destination- whether I want to pass by a yard he may be mowing or not. I have the comfort of knowing that my abuser has not moved a few doors down from my friend’s house that I may visit. I never want to see my abuser again, unless it has to be in a court room where I bravely stand against his petition for removal from the registry. I can’t recall the exact date that I noticed the “minimum of 10 years” duration of registration. But it struck me to my core.
Below is what a profile of a sex offender registry looks like:
As you can see above, my abuser has a regular registration type for the minimum of 10 years. What this means is that my abuser is “technically” registered for life, however after 10 years he has the opportunity to petition for his name to removed from the registry. I’ll talk more about this in a later post, but as you may be, I was outraged. My abuser faced 36 months probation and 2 days of confinement. This is not okay. It is not okay for me. It is not okay for any other person that has faced the horrors of abuse.
If your abuser is listed on a sex offender registry, I encourage you to either visit the registry website or have someone you trust visit it for you. See what type of registration he/she has, the length of time listed, then read the sex offender registry laws in your state. They can be found here. Be empowered through knowledge. If your abuser resides in a state where a petition is possible, talk to the District Attorney’s office and find out ways you can have a voice if the time comes. In my case, an Assistant District Attorney has given me his word that he will notify me if my abuser petitions. He will do everything in his power to provide me with the chance to make an impact statement at the petition hearing. And, in the event that I am unable to attend the hearing, he has a copy of my impact statement that can be read to the judge. Our voices are strong. Our voices will make a difference.
This exit no longer brings fear or flashbacks. It now means family, small town back roads, Mema’s home cooking and Papa’s steak and shrimp.
I ❤ Kenansville