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YOU ARE HERE: Home Texas Sex Offender Statute

Texas Code of Criminal Procedure: Chapter 62. Sex Offender Registration Program - Subchapter A: General Provisions

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Article Index
Texas Code of Criminal Procedure: Chapter 62. Sex Offender Registration Program
General Provisions
Registration and Verification
Expiration of duty to register
Provisions applicable to certain workers and students
Provisions applicable to persons subject to civil commitment
Removal of registration information
Exemption from registration for certain you adult sex offenders
Exemption from registration for certain juveniles
Early termination of certain persons' obligation to register
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SUBCHAPTER A. GENERAL PROVISIONS

Art. 62.001. DEFINITIONS. In this chapter:

(1) "Department" means the Department of Public Safety.

(2) "Local law enforcement authority" means the chief of police of a municipality or the sheriff of a county in this state.

(2) "Local law enforcement authority" means, as applicable, the chief of police of a municipality, the sheriff of a county in this state, or a centralized registration authority.

(3) "Penal institution" means a confinement facility operated by or under a contract with any division of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, a confinement facility operated by or under contract with the Texas Youth Commission, or a juvenile secure pre-adjudication or post-adjudication facility operated by or under a local juvenile probation department, or a county jail.

(4) "Released" means discharged, paroled, placed in a nonsecure community program for juvenile offenders, or placed on juvenile probation, community supervision, or mandatory supervision.

(5) "Reportable conviction or adjudication" means a conviction or adjudication, including an adjudication of delinquent conduct or a deferred adjudication, that, regardless of the pendency of an appeal, is a conviction for or an adjudication for or based on:

(A) a violation of Section 21.02 (Continuous sexual abuse of young child or children), 21.11 (Indecency with a child), 22.011 (Sexual assault), 22.021 (Aggravated sexual assault), or 25.02 (Prohibited sexual conduct), Penal Code;

(B) a violation of Section 43.05 (Compelling prostitution), 43.25 (Sexual performance by a child), or 43.26 (Possession or promotion of child pornography), Penal Code;

(C) a violation of Section 20.04(a)(4) (Aggravated kidnapping), Penal Code, if the actor committed the offense or engaged in the conduct with intent to violate or abuse the victim sexually;

(D) a violation of Section 30.02 (Burglary), Penal Code, if the offense or conduct is punishable under Subsection (d) of that section and the actor committed the offense or engaged in the conduct with intent to commit a felony listed in Paragraph (A) or (C);

 

(E) a violation of Section 20.02 (Unlawful restraint), 20.03 (Kidnapping), or 20.04 (Aggravated kidnapping), Penal Code, if, as applicable:

(i) the judgment in the case contains an affirmative finding under Article 42.015; or

(ii) the order in the hearing or the papers in the case contain an affirmative finding that the victim or intended victim was younger than 17 years of age;

(F) the second violation of Section 21.08 (Indecent exposure), Penal Code, but not if the second violation results in a deferred adjudication;

(G) an attempt, conspiracy, or solicitation, as defined by Chapter 15, Penal Code, to commit an offense or engage in conduct listed in Paragraph (A), (B), (C), (D), or (E);

(H) a violation of the laws of another state, federal law, the laws of a foreign country, or the Uniform Code of Military Justice for or based on the violation of an offense containing elements that are substantially similar to the elements of an offense listed under Paragraph (A), (B), (C), (D), (E), (G), or (J), but not if the violation results in a deferred adjudication;

(I) the second violation of the laws of another state, federal law, the laws of a foreign country, or the Uniform Code of Military Justice for or based on the violation of an offense containing elements that are substantially similar to the elements of the offense of indecent exposure, but not if the second violation results in a deferred adjudication; or

(J) a violation of Section 33.021 (Online solicitation of a minor), Penal Code.

(6) "Sexually violent offense" means any of the following offenses committed by a person 17 years of age or older:

(A) an offense under Section 21.02 (Continuous sexual abuse of young child or children), 21.11(a)(1) (Indecency with a child), 22.011 (Sexual assault), or 22.021 (Aggravated sexual assault), Penal Code;

(B) an offense under Section 43.25 (Sexual performance by a child), Penal Code;

(C) an offense under Section 20.04(a)(4) (Aggravated kidnapping), Penal Code, if the defendant committed the offense with intent to violate or abuse the victim sexually;

(D) an offense under Section 30.02 (Burglary), Penal Code, if the offense is punishable under Subsection (d) of that section and the defendant committed the offense with intent to commit a felony listed in Paragraph (A) or (C) of Subdivision (5); or

(E) an offense under the laws of another state, federal law, the laws of a foreign country, or the Uniform Code of Military Justice if the offense contains elements that are substantially similar to the elements of an offense listed under Paragraph (A), (B), (C), or (D).

(7) "Residence" includes a residence established in this state by a person described by Article 62.152(e).

(8) "Public or private institution of higher education" includes a college, university, community college, or technical or trade institute.

(9) "Authority for campus security" means the authority with primary law enforcement jurisdiction over property under the control of a public or private institution of higher education, other than a local law enforcement authority.

(10) "Extrajurisdictional registrant" means a person who:

(A) is required to register as a sex offender under:

(i) the laws of another state with which the department has entered into a reciprocal registration agreement;

(ii) federal law or the Uniform Code of Military Justice; or

(iii) the laws of a foreign country; and

(B) is not otherwise required to register under this chapter because:

(i) the person does not have a reportable conviction for an offense under the laws of the other state, federal law, the laws of the foreign country, or the Uniform Code of Military Justice containing elements that are substantially similar to the elements of an offense requiring registration under this chapter; or

(ii) the person does not have a reportable adjudication of delinquent conduct based on a violation of an offense under the laws of the other state, federal law, or the laws of the foreign country containing elements that are substantially similar to the elements of an offense requiring registration under this chapter.

 

Text of subdivision as added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 566, Sec. 1

(11) "Centralized registration authority" means a mandatory countywide registration location designated under Article 62.0045.

Text of subdivision as added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 755, Sec. 2

(11) "Online identifier" means electronic mail address information or a name used by a person when sending or receiving an instant message, social networking communication, or similar Internet communication or when participating in an Internet chat. The term includes an assumed name, nickname, pseudonym, moniker, or user name established by a person for use in connection with an electronic mail address, chat or instant chat room platform, commercial social networking site, or online picture-sharing service.

Reenacted and amended by Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 1008, Sec. 1.01, eff. September 1, 2005.

Amended by:

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 1273, Sec. 2, eff. June 18, 2005.

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 593, Sec. 3.22(a), eff. September 1, 2007.

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 593, Sec. 3.22(b), eff. September 1, 2007.

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 593, Sec. 3.23, eff. September 1, 2007.

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 921, Sec. 3.002(a), eff. September 1, 2007.

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 921, Sec. 3.002(b), eff. September 1, 2007.

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 566, Sec. 1, eff. June 19, 2009.

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 755, Sec. 2, eff. September 1, 2009.

Art. 62.002. APPLICABILITY OF CHAPTER. (a) This chapter applies only to a reportable conviction or adjudication occurring on or after September 1, 1970.

(b) Except as provided by Subsection (c), the duties imposed on a person required to register under this chapter on the basis of a reportable conviction or adjudication, and the corresponding duties and powers of other entities in relation to the person required to register on the basis of that conviction or adjudication, are not affected by:

(1) an appeal of the conviction or adjudication; or

(2) a pardon of the conviction or adjudication.

(c) If a conviction or adjudication that is the basis of a duty to register under this chapter is set aside on appeal by a court or if the person required to register under this chapter on the basis of a conviction or adjudication receives a pardon on the basis of subsequent proof of innocence, the duties imposed on the person by this chapter and the corresponding duties and powers of other entities in relation to the person are terminated.

Reenacted and amended by Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 1008, Sec. 1.01, eff. September 1, 2005.

Art. 62.003. DETERMINATION REGARDING SUBSTANTIALLY SIMILAR ELEMENTS OF OFFENSE. (a) For the purposes of this chapter, the department is responsible for determining whether an offense under the laws of another state, federal law, the laws of a foreign country, or the Uniform Code of Military Justice contains elements that are substantially similar to the elements of an offense under the laws of this state.

(b) The department annually shall provide or make available to each prosecuting attorney's office in this state:

(1) the criteria used in making a determination under Subsection (a); and

(2) any existing record or compilation of offenses under the laws of another state, federal law, the laws of a foreign country, and the Uniform Code of Military Justice that the department has already determined to contain elements that are substantially similar to the elements of offenses under the laws of this state.

(c) An appeal of a determination made under this article shall be brought in a district court in Travis County.

Reenacted and amended by Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 1008, Sec. 1.01, eff. September 1, 2005.

Art. 62.004. DETERMINATION REGARDING PRIMARY REGISTRATION AUTHORITY. (a) Except as provided by Subsection (a-1), for each person subject to registration under this chapter, the department shall determine which local law enforcement authority serves as the person's primary registration authority based on the municipality or county in which the person resides or, as provided by Article 62.152, the municipality or county in which the person works or attends school.

(a-1) Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, if a person resides or, as described by Article 62.152, works or attends school in a county with a centralized registration authority, the centralized registration authority serves as the person's primary registration authority under this chapter, regardless of whether the person resides, works, or attends school, as applicable, in any municipality located in that county.

(b) The department shall notify each person subject to registration under this chapter of the person's primary registration authority in a timely manner.

Reenacted and amended by Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 1008, Sec. 1.01, eff. September 1, 2005.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 566, Sec. 2, eff. June 19, 2009.

Art. 62.0045. CENTRALIZED REGISTRATION AUTHORITY. (a) The commissioners court in a county with a population of 100,000 or more may designate the office of the sheriff of the county or may, through interlocal agreement, designate the office of a chief of police of a municipality in that county to serve as a mandatory countywide registration location for persons subject to this chapter.

(b) Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter, a person who is subject to this chapter shall register under Article 62.051 or verify registration under Article 62.058 only with the centralized registration authority for the county, regardless of whether the person resides in any municipality located in that county. If the person resides in a municipality, and the local law enforcement authority in the municipality does not serve as the person's centralized registration authority, the centralized registration authority, not later than the third day after the date the person registers or verifies registration with that authority, shall provide to the local law enforcement authority in that municipality notice of the person's registration or verification of registration, as applicable, with the centralized registration authority.

Added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 566, Sec. 3, eff. June 19, 2009.

Art. 62.005. CENTRAL DATABASE; PUBLIC INFORMATION. (a) The department shall maintain a computerized central database containing the information required for registration under this chapter. The department may include in the computerized central database the numeric risk level assigned to a person under this chapter.

(b) The information contained in the database, including the numeric risk level assigned to a person under this chapter, is public information, with the exception of any information:

(1) regarding the person's social security number or driver's license number, or any home, work, or cellular telephone number of the person;

(2) that is described by Article 62.051(c)(7) or required by the department under Article 62.051(c)(8); or

(3) that would identify the victim of the offense for which the person is subject to registration.

(c) Notwithstanding Chapter 730, Transportation Code, the department shall maintain in the database, and shall post on any department website related to the database, any photograph of the person that is available through the process for obtaining or renewing a personal identification certificate or driver's license under Section 521.103 or 521.272, Transportation Code. The department shall update the photograph in the database and on the website annually or as the photograph otherwise becomes available through the renewal process for the certificate or license.

(d) A local law enforcement authority shall release public information described under Subsection (b) to any person who requests the information from the authority. The authority may charge the person a fee not to exceed the amount reasonably necessary to cover the administrative costs associated with the authority's release of information to the person under this subsection.

(e) The department shall provide a licensing authority with notice of any person required to register under this chapter who holds or seeks a license that is issued by the authority. The department shall provide the notice required by this subsection as the applicable licensing information becomes available through the person's registration or verification of registration.

(f) On the written request of a licensing authority that identifies an individual and states that the individual is an applicant for or a holder of a license issued by the authority, the department shall release any information described by Subsection (a) to the licensing authority.

(g) For the purposes of Subsections (e) and (f):

(1) "License" means a license, certificate, registration, permit, or other authorization that:

(A) is issued by a licensing authority; and

(B) a person must obtain to practice or engage in a particular business, occupation, or profession.

(2) "Licensing authority" means a department, commission, board, office, or other agency of the state or a political subdivision of the state that issues a license.

(h) Not later than the third day after the date on which the applicable information becomes available through the person's registration or verification of registration or under Article 62.058, the department shall send notice of any person required to register under this chapter who is or will be employed, carrying on a vocation, or a student at a public or private institution of higher education in this state to:

(1) for an institution in this state:

(A) the authority for campus security for that institution; or

(B) if an authority for campus security for that institution does not exist, the local law enforcement authority of:

(i) the municipality in which the institution is located; or

(ii) the county in which the institution is located, if the institution is not located in a municipality; or

(2) for an institution in another state, any existing authority for campus security at that institution.

(i) On the written request of an institution of higher education described by Subsection (h) that identifies an individual and states that the individual has applied to work or study at the institution, the department shall release any information described by Subsection (a) to the institution.

(j) The department, for law enforcement purposes, shall release all relevant information described by Subsection (a), including information that is not public information under Subsection (b), to a peace officer, an employee of a local law enforcement authority, or the attorney general on the request of the applicable person or entity.

Reenacted and amended by Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 1008, Sec. 1.01, eff. September 1, 2005.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 755, Sec. 3, eff. September 1, 2009.

Art. 62.006. INFORMATION PROVIDED TO PEACE OFFICER ON REQUEST. The department shall establish a procedure by which a peace officer or employee of a law enforcement agency who provides the department with a driver's license number, personal identification certificate number, or license plate number is automatically provided information as to whether the person to whom the driver's license or personal identification certificate is issued is required to register under this chapter or whether the license plate number is entered in the computerized central database under Article 62.005 as assigned to a vehicle owned or driven by a person required to register under this chapter.

Reenacted and amended by Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 1008, Sec. 1.01, eff. September 1, 2005.

Art. 62.0061. REQUEST FOR ONLINE IDENTIFIERS BY SOCIAL NETWORKING SITES. (a) On request by a commercial social networking site, the department may provide to the commercial social networking site:

(1) all public information that is contained in the database maintained under Article 62.005; and

(2) notwithstanding Article 62.005(b)(2), any online identifier established or used by a person who uses the site, is seeking to use the site, or is precluded from using the site.

(b) The department by rule shall establish a procedure through which a commercial social networking site may request information under Subsection (a), including rules regarding the eligibility of commercial social networking sites to request information under Subsection (a). The department shall consult with the attorney general, other appropriate state agencies, and other appropriate entities in adopting rules under this subsection.

(c) A commercial social networking site or the site's agent:

(1) may use information received under Subsection (a) only to:

(A) prescreen persons seeking to use the site; or

(B) preclude persons registered under this chapter from using the site; and

(2) may not use any information received under Subsection (a) that the networking site obtained solely under Subsection (a) in any manner not described by Subdivision (1).

(d) A commercial social networking site that uses information received under Subsection (a) in any manner not described by Subsection (c)(1) or that violates a rule adopted by the department under Subsection (b) is subject to a civil penalty of $1,000 for each misuse of information or rule violation. A commercial social networking site that is assessed a civil penalty under this article shall pay, in addition to the civil penalty, all court costs, investigative costs, and attorney's fees associated with the assessment of the penalty. A civil penalty assessed under this subsection shall be deposited to the compensation to victims of crime fund established under Subchapter B, Chapter 56.

(e) This article does not create a private cause of action against a commercial social networking site, including a cause of action that is based on the site:

(1) identifying, removing, disabling, blocking, or otherwise affecting the user of a commercial social networking site, based on a good faith belief that the person is required to register as a sex offender under this chapter or federal law; or

(2) failing to identify, remove, disable, block, or otherwise affect the user of a commercial social networking site who is required to register as a sex offender under this chapter or federal law.

(f) In this article, "commercial social networking site":

(1) means an Internet website that:

(A) allows users, through the creation of Internet web pages or profiles or other similar means, to provide personal information to the public or other users of the Internet website;

(B) offers a mechanism for communication with other users of the Internet website; and

(C) has the primary purpose of facilitating online social interactions; and

(2) does not include an Internet service provider, unless the Internet service provider separately operates and directly derives revenue from an Internet website described by Subdivision (1).

Added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 755, Sec. 4, eff. September 1, 2009.

Art. 62.007. RISK ASSESSMENT REVIEW COMMITTEE; SEX OFFENDER SCREENING TOOL. (a) The Texas Department of Criminal Justice shall establish a risk assessment review committee composed of at least seven members, each of whom serves on the review committee in addition to the member's other employment-related duties. The review committee, to the extent feasible, must include at least:

(1) one member having experience in law enforcement;

(2) one member having experience working with juvenile sex offenders;

(3) one member having experience as a sex offender treatment provider;

(4) one member having experience working with victims of sex offenses;

(5) the executive director of the Council on Sex Offender Treatment; and

(6) one sex offender treatment provider registered under Chapter 110, Occupations Code, and selected by the executive director of the Council on Sex Offender Treatment to serve on the review committee.

(b) The risk assessment review committee functions in an oversight capacity. The committee shall:

(1) develop or select, from among existing tools or from any tool recommended by the Council on Sex Offender Treatment, a sex offender screening tool to be used in determining the level of risk of a person subject to registration under this chapter;

(2) ensure that staff is trained on the use of the screening tool;

(3) monitor the use of the screening tool in the state; and

(4) analyze other screening tools as they become available and revise or replace the existing screening tool if warranted.

(c) The sex offender screening tool must use an objective point system under which a person is assigned a designated number of points for each of various factors. In developing or selecting the sex offender screening tool, the risk assessment review committee shall use or shall select a screening tool that may be adapted to use the following general guidelines:

(1) level one (low): a designated range of points on the sex offender screening tool indicating that the person poses a low danger to the community and will not likely engage in criminal sexual conduct;

(2) level two (moderate): a designated range of points on the sex offender screening tool indicating that the person poses a moderate danger to the community and might continue to engage in criminal sexual conduct; and

(3) level three (high): a designated range of points on the sex offender screening tool indicating that the person poses a serious danger to the community and will continue to engage in criminal sexual conduct.

(d) The risk assessment review committee, the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, the Texas Youth Commission, or a court may override a risk level only if the entity:

(1) believes that the risk level assessed is not an accurate prediction of the risk the offender poses to the community; and

(2) documents the reason for the override in the offender's case file.

(e) Notwithstanding Chapter 58, Family Code, records and files, including records that have been sealed under Section 58.003 of that code, relating to a person for whom a court, the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, or the Texas Youth Commission is required under this article to determine a level of risk shall be released to the court, department, or commission, as appropriate, for the purpose of determining the person's risk level.

(f) Chapter 551, Government Code, does not apply to a meeting of the risk assessment review committee.

(g) The numeric risk level assigned to a person using the sex offender screening tool described by this article is not confidential and is subject to disclosure under Chapter 552, Government Code.

Reenacted and amended by Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 1008, Sec. 1.01, eff. September 1, 2005.

Art. 62.008. GENERAL IMMUNITY. The following persons are immune from liability for good faith conduct under this chapter:

(1) an employee or officer of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, the Texas Youth Commission, the Texas Juvenile Probation Commission, the Department of Public Safety, the Board of Pardons and Paroles, or a local law enforcement authority;

(2) an employee or officer of a community supervision and corrections department or a juvenile probation department;

(3) a member of the judiciary; and

(4) a member of the risk assessment review committee established under Article 62.007.

Reenacted and amended by Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 1008, Sec. 1.01, eff. September 1, 2005.

Art. 62.009. IMMUNITY FOR RELEASE OF PUBLIC INFORMATION. (a) The department, a penal institution, a local law enforcement authority, or an authority for campus security may release to the public information regarding a person required to register under this chapter only if the information is public information under this chapter.

(b) An individual, agency, entity, or authority is not liable under Chapter 101, Civil Practice and Remedies Code, or any other law for damages arising from conduct authorized by Subsection (a).

(c) For purposes of determining liability, the release or withholding of information by an appointed or elected officer of an agency, entity, or authority is a discretionary act.

(d) A private primary or secondary school, public or private institution of higher education, or administrator of a private primary or secondary school or public or private institution of higher education may release to the public information regarding a person required to register under this chapter only if the information is public information under this chapter and is released to the administrator under Article 62.005, 62.053, 62.054, 62.055, or 62.153. A private primary or secondary school, public or private institution of higher education, or administrator of a private primary or secondary school or public or private institution of higher education is not liable under any law for damages arising from conduct authorized by this subsection.

Reenacted and amended by Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 1008, Sec. 1.01, eff. September 1, 2005.

Art. 62.010. RULEMAKING AUTHORITY. The Texas Department of Criminal Justice, the Texas Youth Commission, the Texas Juvenile Probation Commission, and the department may adopt any rule necessary to implement this chapter.

Reenacted and amended by Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 1008, Sec. 1.01, eff. September 1, 2005.