Supreme Court will rule on online registry of sex offenders

Supreme Court will rule on online registry of sex offenders

The Supreme Court will review a state law that requires the online posting of names, addresses and photographs of convicted sex offenders.

The court yesterday announced that it would consider Connecticut Department of Public Safety vs. Doe. The case originated in 1999 when two men sued Connecticut in federal court, arguing they were not dangerous and would be stigmatized if the state law were applied to them.

According to the Connecticut law, anyone convicted of a sex-related crime must supply name, address, photograph and DNA samples to the state police, which posts the information on its Web site.

Last year, the Connecticut's State Police Department posted information about 2,100 offenders on the site, which received 150,000 hits each month.

But a federal district judge sided with the men last year, ruling the posting of the personal data without a hearing to determine if they were dangerous violated the men's constitutional rights.

The Supreme Court will hear oral arguments next fall, and a ruling is expected by July 2003.

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