The Vermont Statutes Online

Title 13: Crimes and Criminal Procedure

Chapter 167: CRIME VICTIMS

Sub-Chapter 003: Sex Offender Registration; Law Enforcement Notification

13 V.S.A. § 5411. Notification to local law enforcement and local community



§ 5411. Notification to local law enforcement and local community

(a) Upon receiving a sex offender's registration materials from the Department of Corrections, notification that a nonresident sex offender has crossed into Vermont for the purpose of employment, carrying on a vocation, or being a student, or a sex offender's release or change of address, including changes of address which involve taking up residence in this State, the Department shall immediately notify the local law enforcement agency of the following information, which may be used only for lawful law enforcement activities:

(1) name;

(2) general physical description;

(3) nature of offense;

(4) sentence;

(5) the fact that the Registry has on file additional information, including the sex offender's photograph and fingerprints;

(6) current employment;

(7) name and address of any postsecondary educational institution at which the sex offender is enrolled as a student; and

(8) whether the offender complied with treatment recommended by the Department of Corrections.

(b)(1) Except as provided for in subsections (c) and (e) of this section, the Department, the Department of Corrections, and any authorized local law enforcement agency shall release Registry information concerning persons required to register under State law if the requestor can articulate a concern about the behavior of a specific person regarding the requestor's personal safety or the safety of another, or the requestor has reason to believe that a specific person may be a registered sex offender and can articulate a concern regarding the requestor's personal safety or the safety of another. However, the identity of a victim of an offense shall not be released.

(2) The Department, the Department of Corrections, and any authorized local law enforcement agency shall release the following Registry information if the requestor meets the requirements in subdivision (1) of this subsection:

(A) a general physical description of the offender;

(B) date of birth;

(C) the date and nature of the offense;

(D) whether the offender complied with treatment recommended by the Department of Corrections; and

(E) whether there is an outstanding warrant for the offender's arrest.

(c)(1) Except as provided for in subsection (e) of this section, upon request of a member of the public about a specific person, the Department, the Department of Corrections, and any authorized local law enforcement agency shall release Registry information on sex offenders whose information is required to be posted on the Internet in accordance with section 5411a of this title.

(2) The Department, the Department of Corrections, and any authorized local law enforcement agency shall release the following Registry information to a requestor in accordance with subdivision (1) of this subsection:

(A) the offender's known aliases;

(B) the offender's date of birth;

(C) a general physical description of the offender;

(D) the offender's town of residence;

(E) the date and nature of the offender's conviction;

(F) if the offender is under the supervision of the Department of Corrections, the name and telephone number of the local Department of Corrections office in charge of monitoring the offender;

(G) whether the offender complied with treatment recommended by the Department of Corrections;

(H) whether there is an outstanding warrant for the offender's arrest; and

(I) the reason for which the offender information is accessible under subdivision (1) of this subsection.

(3)(A) The Department, the Department of Corrections, and any authorized local law enforcement agency may, at the discretion of an authorized law enforcement officer, release the current address of an offender listed in subdivision (1) of this subsection if the requestor can articulate a concern regarding the requestor's personal safety or the safety of another, and the requirements of subsection (d) of this section have been satisfied.

(B) For purposes of this subdivision, "authorized law enforcement officer" means a sheriff, a chief of police, the Commissioner of Public Safety, the State's Attorney of Essex County, or a designee. The designee shall be a certified law enforcement officer whose authority is granted or given by the sheriff, chief of police, Commissioner of Public Safety, or State's Attorney of Essex County, either through explicit order or Department policy.

(d) The Department, the Department of Corrections, and any local law enforcement agency authorized to release Registry information shall keep a log of requests for registry information and follow the procedure for verification of the requestor's identity recommended by the Department. Such log shall include the requestor's name, address, telephone number, the name of the person for whom the request was made, the reason for the request, and the date of the request. Information about requestors shall be confidential and shall only be accessible to criminal justice agencies.

(e) After 10 years have elapsed from the completion of the sentence, a person required to register as a sex offender for life pursuant to section 5407 of this title who is not designated as a noncompliant high-risk sex offender pursuant to section 5411d of this title may petition the Criminal Division of the Superior Court for a termination of community notification, including the Internet. The State shall make a reasonable attempt to notify the victim of the proceeding, and consider victim testimony regarding the petition. If the registrant was convicted of a crime which requires lifetime registration, there shall be a rebuttable presumption that the person is a high-risk sex offender. Should the registrant present evidence that he or she is not a high-risk offender, the State shall have the burden of proof to establish by a preponderance of the evidence that the person remains a high risk to reoffend. The Court shall consider whether the offender has successfully completed sex offender treatment. The Court may require the offender to submit to a psychosexual evaluation. If the Court finds that there is a high risk of reoffense, notification shall continue. The Vermont Rules of Civil Procedure shall apply to these proceedings. A lifetime registrant may petition the Court to be removed from community notification requirements once every 60 months. The presumption under this section that a lifetime registrant is a high-risk offender shall not automatically subject the offender to increased public access to his or her status as a sex offender and related information under subdivision (c)(1) of this section or section 5411a of this title.

(f) Registry information shall not be released under this section unless it is released pursuant to written protocols governing the manner and circumstances of the release developed by the Department, the Department of Corrections, or an authorized law enforcement agency. The protocols shall include consultation between the department or agency releasing the information and the Department of Corrections' staff member responsible for supervising the offender. (Added 1995, No. 124 (Adj. Sess.), § 1, eff. Sept. 1, 1996; amended 1999, No. 152 (Adj. Sess.), § 78b, eff. May 29, 2000; 2001, No. 49, § 9, eff. Sept. 1, 2001; 2003, No. 157 (Adj. Sess.), § 6; 2005, No. 192 (Adj. Sess.), §§ 23, 26, 31, eff. May 26, 2006; 2007, No. 77, § 8, eff. June 7, 2007; 2009, No. 154, § 238.)