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Doe, Sex Offender Registry Board No. 151564 v. Sex Offender Registry Board (Lawyers Weekly No. 11-015-14)

NOTICE: All slip opinions and orders are subject to formal revision and are superseded by the advance sheets and bound volumes of the Official Reports.  If you find a typographical error or other formal error, please notify the Reporter of Decisions, Supreme Judicial Court, John Adams Courthouse, 1 Pemberton Square, Suite 2500, Boston, MA 02108-1750; (617) 557-1030;       12‑P‑1981                                                                             Appeals Court   JOHN DOE, SEX OFFENDER REGISTRY BOARD NO. 151564  vs.  SEX OFFENDER REGISTRY BOARD. No. 12‑P‑1981. Suffolk.     January 8, 2014.  ‑  February 24, 2014. Present:  Kafker, Grainger, & Meade, JJ.   Sex Offender.  Sex Offender Registration and Community Notification Act.  Administrative Law, Hearing, Evidence.  Evidence, Expert opinion.  Witness, Expert.       Civil action commenced in the Superior Court Department on August 24, 2010.   The case was heard by Paul E. Troy, J., on a motion for judgment on the pleadings.     Andrew S. Crouch for the plaintiff. Jennifer K. Zalnasky for the defendant.     KAFKER, J.  In Doe, Sex Offender Registry Bd. No. 151564 v. Sex Offender Registry Bd., 456 Mass. 612 (2010) (Doe No. 151564), the Supreme Judicial Court remanded this case to the Sex Offender Registry Board (SORB) to consider numerous scientific and statistical studies regarding the effect of the plaintiff’s (Doe) age on his dangerousness and likelihood to reoffend and whether Doe was entitled to expert witness funds.  On remand, a SORB hearing examiner denied Doe’s request for funds for an expert and engaged in her own unguided review of the scientific and statistical studies.  The hearing examiner reaffirmed SORB’s earlier decision to classify Doe as a level three sex offender, and on Doe’s appeal to the Superior Court pursuant to G. L. c. 30A, see G. L. c. 6, § 178M, a judge affirmed that decision.  We conclude that Doe was entitled to funds for an expert to inform both his own presentation and the hearing examiner’s classification review.  We therefore vacate the judgment of the Superior Court and remand the case to SORB for further proceedings consistent with this opinion. Background.  Doe was born on March 26, 1946.  In June, 2001, in Maine, he sexually abused a six year old child who was not a family member.  Doe pleaded guilty in Maine to one count of unlawful sexual conduct in violation of Me. Rev. Stat. Ann. tit. 17A, § 255(1)(C).  In Doe No. 151564, 456 Mass. at 613, the Supreme Judicial Court concluded this conviction was a “like violation” when compared to the Massachusetts crime of indecent assault and battery on a child under fourteen years of age, G. L. c. 265, § 13H, and therefore required Doe to register as a sex offender in Massachusetts, where he was then living. In the  original classification […]


Posted by Massachusetts Legal Resources - February 24, 2014 at 7:56 pm

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