Friday, June 4, 2010

Attorney General Statement in Response to Ohio Supreme Court Decision in State v. Bodyke Attorney General Statement in Response to Ohio Supreme Court Decision in State v. Bodyke.

6/3/2010 (Columbus, Ohio) – In a narrowly tailored decision today, the Ohio Supreme Court invalidated two provisions of the Ohio Adam Walsh Act on separation-of-powers grounds. The act was passed by the General Assembly in July 2007 and became effective on Jan. 1, 2008. In response to the court’s decision in the case of State v. Bodyke, Attorney General Richard Cordray released the following statement:

“We are digesting the Supreme Court’s decision, which appears to be limited in scope. The broad provisions of Ohio’s Adam Walsh Act remain in place. In striking down a narrow portion of the act, the court has reinstated the classifications and community notification and registration orders imposed by judges under prior state law for certain offenders who had been sentenced before Jan. 1, 2008,” said Cordray. “Offenders who were classified on or after Jan. 1, 2008 are unaffected by today’s ruling. Those 26,000 offenders who had been reclassified under Ohio’s Adam Walsh Act will now revert to their prior classifications before the act was passed. To comply with the court’s order, my office will work to reclassify these offenders through Ohio’s Electronic Sex Offender Registration and Notification database (eSORN) and will notify offenders of their new classification. We will also continue to support local law enforcement agencies as they work to provide families with the information they need to keep their children safe.”

Ohio’s Adam Walsh Act was enacted to bring Ohio’s offender notification laws into conformity with the federal Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (SORNA). Ohio was the first state to reach substantial implementation of the federal standards, as certified by the U.S. Department of Justice. Nothing in today’s decision affects Ohio’s status in regard to maintaining this designation. Other provisions of the act have been challenged in separate cases that remain pending before the Ohio Supreme Court.

Media Contacts:

Kim Kowalski: (614) 728-9692

cell: (614) 893-6018
Ted Hart: (614) 728-4127
cell: (614) 743-2286

Important! See Ohio: Next Step – What We Must Do