• I Married a Sex Offender

    Below is excerpt from original article that you can read here: https://www.themarshallproject.org/2016/02/18/i-married-a-sex-offender?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=newsletter&utm_source=opening-statement&utm_term=newsletter-20160219-388#.a8mkGIRAH

    For the first three years he was home, his picture wasn’t even on the [sex-offender registry] website. You would actually have to go into the police department to find out anything about him. And then they said they had made a mistake. Then, all of a sudden, his name and photograph is on there. Then they said he can’t live within 2,000 feet from a school. We had just bought a home, and lived about 2,020 feet away from a school. Thank God we didn’t have to move.

    Every time we turned around, it was something new.

    We really wanted to be parents. But the more the laws kept changing, and the more we saw how people on the registry were treated — which at this point, he has truly not had to experience, but he’s just terrified of what could be — we just thought it’s not the responsible thing to do, to bring a child in the midst of this. To have to explain to them, “Your dad can’t pick you up from school, you can’t have friends over.”

    We went and bought a large map and placed it in my office and just said, You know what? We have four young nieces that all live within about ten miles of us. Our very close friends with kids, they are always spending time at our home. We’re going to be the best aunt and uncle we can be and we’re just going to go travel the world. We started traveling everywhere we could. We’ve gone to the Caribbean, we’ve gone to Europe. We have a trip planned right now to Greece in August.

    This new law finally put us both over the edge. When we first found out about them sending notifications to other countries, we figured out a way around it. We live near the Tijuana border, and I said, Let’s try and fly out of there and see what happens. But of course when we fly back to the U.S., he’s essentially harassed at customs. There’s nothing they can do, because he’s not breaking the law, but they want to know how he got there and how he’s been to all these places. There’s been times where they’ve looked through all his stuff, torn everything apart, asked if he has computers, asked where he’s been, asked who he’s been with. To be harassed every time you come home, it’s a little uneasy.

    Now with what’s coming, we kind of just feel like our backs are against the wall. Do we pick everything up and leave? We just don’t know if that’s the right thing to do. We have very close ties to our family here. I’m a business owner. We’re financially pretty successful here. We just thought: Either we’ll stay in California and just stick this out and hope maybe one day the laws will change. Or we’ll leave the country altogether and be done with it. It’s just a never-ending punishment.

    Categories: Civil Rights, Community

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