Being convicted of any type of crime in North Carolina can have serious repercussions on a person’s life and future, but perhaps none more than being convicted of sex crimes. Those who are required to register as sex offenders in the state often face considerable challenges because of the laws that prevent registered sex offenders from living in certain areas, having certain jobs and even where they can go legally in their communities. Four men were recently arrested at a state fair because of their alleged violation of a state law aimed at protecting the innocent and vulnerable members of society.
The incident and arrests
The report did not list the specific time and date of the incident, but on or around Sept. 23, four men apparently tried to take part in the festivities at the 2022 North Carolina Mountain State Fair in Buncombe County. Reportedly, each of the four was a registered sex offender in the state. The state’s general statute 14-208.18 forbids registered sex offenders from being in certain public places, and that includes state fairs.
Apparently, law enforcement recognized the men because they had previous dealings with them. The report states that officers were both in uniform and undercover during the state fair event. The four men range in age from 31 to 53, and none had any previous offenses related to the state statute.
Right to defense
Authorities say that the individuals should have known they were forbidden to enter the fairgrounds because they are supposed to confirm and even provide their initials when they were entered into the registry. No details were given as to the specific charges they face, but the report mentioned that each had been released on bail. Although nothing can change the past, North Carolina has options available for some who qualify to remove their names from the sex offender registry. The men can discuss their rights and options with an experienced criminal defense attorney, both to answer the current charges against them and understand any available options for removal from the registry.