Kansas Supreme Court Rules Registries Are Not Punishment

People on criminal registries in Kansas face felony charges for getting a new email address without alerting law enforcement.

The Kansas News Service reports that it’s just one of the ways that criminal registries in Kansas restrict a broad range of people even after they’ve completed probation and parole.

The Kansas Supreme Court ruled in a pair of cases last week that the state’s criminal registry laws are constitutional.

Whether they were convicted of serious felonies or misdemeanors, registrants must check in with their sheriff’s office and pay $20 every three months.

Changing jobs, getting a tattoo, or buying a car would also require a check-in within three days of the change.

Missing check-ins or falling behind $40 on fees for more than two weeks is a felony.

The majority of the Kansas Supreme Court ruled that the Legislature didn’t intend for the system to be a punishment, and therefore can’t be considered cruel or unusual punishment.