- Associated Press - Saturday, April 9, 2016

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) - Nebraska’s attorney general is appealing a federal judge’s decision to block the state from putting a 13-year-old boy who moved to Nebraska from Minnesota on its public list of sex offenders.

Suzanne Gage, a spokeswoman for the Nebraska Attorney General’s Office, said the appeal is needed “because the outcome of the case has important ramifications on how Nebraska’s Sex Offender Registry Act should be properly interpreted,” the Lincoln Journal Star (https://bit.ly/1VHAcWt ) reported Saturday.

In Nebraska, lawmakers opted to exclude juveniles from the Nebraska Sex Offender Registration Act unless they were prosecuted criminally in adult court. The Nebraska State Patrol determined the boy had to register when he moved to Nebraska, saying that the way the law was written made it seem as if all sex offenders who move to Nebraska must register.

In his ruling last month, Senior U.S. District Judge Richard Kopf said it “makes no sense to believe that the Nebraska statutes were intended to be more punitive to juveniles adjudicated out of state as compared to juveniles adjudicated in Nebraska.”

If the boy had done in Nebraska what he did in Minnesota, he would not have been required to register as a sex offender, Kopf said.

Josh Weir, an attorney for the boy’s family, said the attorney general’s decision to appeal is “an absolute waste of time, energy and resources.”


Information from: Lincoln Journal Star, https://www.journalstar.com

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