Under what authority is sex offender information released to the public?

This Department releases sex offender information pursuant to RCW 4.24.550 which authorizes law enforcement to release information to the public regarding sex offenders when the agency determines that disclosure of information is relevant and necessary to protect the public and to counteract the danger created by the particular offender. The content of the information made available, as well as where and how the information is disseminated, is restricted to the standards set forth in Chapter 4.24 and by the Washington State Supreme Court ruling in State v. Ward, 123 WA 2d 488 (1994.)

The individuals who appear on the Snohomish County/Marysville Police websites have been convicted of a sex offense that requires registration with the Sheriff’s Office in the county of their residence. Furthermore, previous criminal history places them in a classification level that reflects the potential to re-offend.

These sex offenders have served the sentence imposed on them by the courts and have advised the Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office that they will be living in the location listed with their information.

The Marysville Police Department has no legal authority to direct where a sex offender may or may not live. Unless court ordered restrictions exist, these offenders are constitutionally free to live wherever they choose.

Sex offenders have always lived in our communities; prior to the passage of the Community Protection Act of 1990 (which mandates sex offender registration) law enforcement officials did not know where offenders were living. Citizens should refrain from threatening, intimidating, or harassing registered sex offenders. Such abuse could potentially end law enforcement’s ability to notify the community. Persons who engage in this behavior not only threaten to take away this tool, but could face criminal charges based on their actions and intent.

Show All Answers

1. What is a sex offender?
2. Who must register as a sex offender?
3. How long must an offender register?
4. What is a risk level?
5. Under what authority is sex offender information released to the public?
6. Who decides where a sex offender may live?
7. Who can I contact to obtain more information regarding Marysville sex offenders?