South Carolina Sexual Predator Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Responsibilities of convicted sex offenders

 

The law, S.C. Codes of Laws Section 23-3-460, Bi-annual registration for life; notification of whereabouts or residence; periodic photographs of predators.

(A) A person required to register pursuant to this article is required to register bi-annually for life. For purposes of this article, “bi-annually” means each year during the month of his birthday and again during the sixth month following his birth month. The person required to register shall register and must re-register at the sheriff’s department in each county where he resides, owns real property, or attends any public or private school, including, but not limited to, a secondary school, adult education school, college or university, and any vocational, technical, or occupational school. A person determined by a court to be a sexually violent predator pursuant to state law is required to verify registration and be photographed every ninety days by the sheriff’s department in the county in which he resides unless the person is committed to the custody of the State, and verification will be held in abeyance until his release.

(B) If a person required to register pursuant to this article changes his address within the same county, that person must send written notice of the change of address to the sheriff within ten days of establishing the new residence. If a person required to register under this article owns or acquires real property within a county in this State, or attends any public or private school, including, but not limited to, a secondary school, adult education school, college or university, and any vocational, technical, or occupational school, he must register with the sheriff in each county where the real property or the public or private school is located within ten days of acquiring the real property or attending the public or private school.

(C) If a person required to register pursuant to this article changes his address into another county in South Carolina, the person must register with the county sheriff in the new county within ten days of establishing the new residence. The person must also provide written notice within ten days of the change of address in the previous county to the sheriff with whom the person last registered.

(D) A person required to register pursuant to this article and who is employed by, attends, is enrolled at, or carries on a vocation at any public or private school, including, but not limited to, a kindergarten, elementary school, middle school or junior high, high school, secondary school, adult education school, college or university, and any vocational, technical, or occupational school, must provide written notice within ten days of each change in attendance, enrollment, employment, or vocation status at any public or private school in this State. For purposes of this subsection, ” employed and carries on a vocation” means employment that is full-time or part-time for a period of time exceeding fourteen days or for an aggregate period of time exceeding thirty days during a calendar year, whether financially compensated, volunteered, or for the purpose of government or educational benefit; and “student” means a person who is enrolled on a full-time or part-time basis, in a public or private school, including, but not limited to, a kindergarten, elementary school, middle school or junior high, high school, secondary school, adult education school, college or university, and a vocational, technical, or occupational school.

(E) If a person required to register pursuant to this article moves outside of South Carolina, the person must provide written notice within ten days of the change of address to a new state to the county sheriff with whom the person last registered.

(F) A person required to register pursuant to this article who moves to South Carolina from another state, establishes residence, acquires real property, attends or is enrolled at, or is employed by or carries on a vocation at a public or private school, including, but not limited to, a kindergarten, elementary school, middle school or junior high, high school, secondary school, adult education school, college or university, and a vocational, technical, or occupational school in South Carolina, and is not under the jurisdiction of the Department of Corrections, the Department of Probation, Parole and Pardon Services, the Department of Juvenile Justice, or the Juvenile Parole Board at the time of moving to South Carolina must register within ten days of establishing residence, acquiring real property, attending or enrolling at, or being employed by or carrying on a vocation at a public or private school in this State.

(G) The sheriff of the county in which the person resides must forward all changes to any information provided by a person required to register pursuant to this article to SLED within five business days.

(H) A sheriff who receives registration information, notification of change of address, or notification of change in attendance, enrollment, employment, or vocation status at a public or private school, including, but not limited to, a kindergarten, elementary school, middle school or junior high, high school, secondary school, adult education school, college or university, and a vocational, technical, or occupational school, must notify all local law enforcement agencies, including college or university law enforcement agencies, within five business days of an offender whose address, real property, or public or private school is within the local law enforcement agency’s jurisdiction.

(I) The South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles, shall inform, in writing, any new resident who applies for a driver’s license, chauffeur’s license, vehicle tag, or state identification card of the obligation of sex offenders to register. The department also shall inform, in writing, a person renewing a driver’s license, chauffeur’s license, vehicle tag, or state identification card of the requirement for sex offenders to register.

Those required to register

The law, South Carolina Code of Laws 23-3-430. Sex offender registry; convictions and not guilty by reason of insanity findings requiring registration. 

(A) Any person, regardless of age, residing in the State of South Carolina who in this State has been convicted of, adjudicated delinquent for, pled guilty or nolo contendere to an offense described below, or who has been convicted, adjudicated delinquent, pled guilty or nolo contendere, or found not guilty by reason of insanity in any comparable court in the United States, or a foreign country, or who has been convicted, adjudicated delinquent, pled guilty or nolo contendere, or found not guilty by reason of insanity in the United States federal courts of a similar offense, or who has been convicted of, adjudicated delinquent for, pled guilty or nolo contendere, or found not guilty by reason of insanity to an offense for which the person was required to register in the state where the conviction or plea occurred, shall be required to register pursuant to the provisions of this article. A person who has been found not guilty by reason of insanity shall not be required to register pursuant to the provisions of this article unless and until the person is declared to no longer be insane or is ordered to register by the trial judge. A person who has been convicted, adjudicated delinquent, pled guilty or nolo contendere, or found not guilty by reason of insanity in any court in a foreign country may raise as a defense to a prosecution for failure to register that the offense in the foreign country was not equivalent to any offense in this State for which he would be required to register and may raise as a defense that the conviction, adjudication, plea, or finding in the foreign country was based on a proceeding or trial in which the person was not afforded the due process of law as guaranteed by the Constitution of the United States and this State.

(B) For purposes of this article, a person who remains in this State for a total of thirty days during a twelve-month period is a resident of this State.

(C) For purposes of this article, a person who has been convicted of, pled guilty or nolo contendere to, or been adjudicated delinquent for any of the following offenses shall be referred to as an offender:

(1) criminal sexual conduct in the first degree (Section 16-3-652);

(2) criminal sexual conduct in the second degree (Section 16-3-653);

(3) criminal sexual conduct in the third degree (Section 16-3-654);

(4) criminal sexual conduct with minors, first degree (Section 16-3-655(1));

(5) criminal sexual conduct with minors, second degree. If evidence is presented at the criminal proceeding and the court makes a specific finding on the record that the conviction obtained for this offense resulted from consensual sexual conduct, as contained in Section 16-3-655(3) provided the offender is eighteen years of age or less, or consensual sexual conduct between persons under sixteen years of age, the convicted person is not an offender and is not required to register pursuant to the provisions of this article;

(6) engaging a child for sexual performance (Section 16-3-810);

(7) producing, directing, or promoting sexual performance by a child (Section 16-3-820);

(8) criminal sexual conduct: assaults with intent to commit (Section 16-3-656);

(9) incest (Section 16-15-20);

(10) buggery (Section 16-15-120);

(11) committing or attempting lewd act upon child under sixteen (Section 16-15-140);

(12) peeping, voyeurism, or aggravated voyeurism (Section 16-17-470);

(13) violations of Article 3, Chapter 15 of Title 16 involving a minor;

(14) a person, regardless of age, who has been convicted, adjudicated delinquent, pled guilty or nolo contendere in this State, or who has been convicted, adjudicated delinquent, pled guilty or nolo contendere in a comparable court in the United States, or who has been convicted, adjudicated delinquent, pled guilty or nolo contendere in the United States federal courts of indecent exposure or of a similar offense in other jurisdictions is required to register pursuant to the provisions of this article if the court makes a specific finding on the record that based on the circumstances of the case the convicted person should register as a sex offender;

(15) kidnapping (Section 16-3-910) of a person eighteen years of age or older except when the court makes a finding on the record that the offense did not include a criminal sexual offense or an attempted criminal sexual offense;

(16) kidnapping (Section 16-3-910) of a person under eighteen years of age except when the offense is committed by a parent;

(17) criminal sexual conduct when the victim is a spouse (Section 16-3-658);

(18) sexual battery of a spouse (Section 16-3-615);

(19) sexual intercourse with a patient or trainee (Section 44-23-1150);

(20) criminal solicitation of a minor if the purpose or intent of the solicitation or attempted solicitation was to:

(a) persuade, induce, entice, or coerce the person solicited to engage or participate in sexual activity as defined in Section 16-15-375(5);

(b) perform a sexual activity in the presence of the person solicited (Section 16-15-342); or

(21) administering, distributing, dispensing, delivering, or aiding, abetting, attempting, or conspiring to administer, distribute, dispense, or deliver a controlled substance or gamma hydroxy butyrate to an individual with the intent to commit a crime listed in Section 44-53-370(f), except petit larceny or grand larceny.

(D) Upon conviction, adjudication of delinquency, guilty plea, or plea of nolo contendere of a person of an offense not listed in this article, the presiding judge may order as a condition of sentencing that the person be included in the sex offender registry if good cause is shown by the solicitor.

(E) SLED shall remove a person’s name and any other information concerning that person from the sex offender registry immediately upon notification by the Attorney General that the person’s adjudication, conviction, guilty plea, or plea of nolo contendere for an offense listed in subsection (C) was reversed, overturned, or vacated on appeal and a final judgment has been rendered.

(F) If an offender receives a pardon for the offense for which he was required to register, the offender may not be removed from the registry except:

(1) as provided by the provisions of subsection (E); or

(2) if the pardon is based on a finding of not guilty specifically stated in the pardon.

(G) If an offender files a petition for a writ of habeas corpus or a motion for a new trial pursuant to Rule 29(b), South Carolina Rules of Criminal Procedure, based on newly discovered evidence, the offender may not be removed from the registry except:

(1) as provided by the provisions of subsection (E); or

(2)(a) if the circuit court grants the offender’s petition or motion and orders a new trial; and

(b) a verdict of acquittal is returned at the new trial or entered with the state’s consent.