Governor Signs Attorney General Tim Fox’s Bill Improving State Sex Offender Registry

Today Governor Steve Bullock signed one of Attorney General Tim Fox’s bills that will help make Montana a safer place to live.

SB 213, introduced at the request of Attorney General Fox, closes a loophole in current Montana law when it comes to convicted sex offenders – felons who often pose a continued risk to society.  Previously, when a sexual or violent offender from another state was released from supervision, that offender was able to move to Montana and was required to register here as a sexual or violent offender.  However, that offender did not have to provide a DNA sample to be entered into the Montana state DNA database.  The gap in the law meant that some unsolved cases may have gone unsolved.  Montana, Colorado, Idaho, and Wisconsin were the only four states in the nation that still did not have the requirement.

Attorney General Fox said, “This new legislation gets Montana in synch with the laws of most other states, and may lead law enforcement and prosecutors to criminals who should be in prison for unsolved crimes.  It also prevents them from committing future harm against our children or other Montanans.”  He added, “I want to thank Governor Bullock for his commitment to keeping Montana’s families safe, Senator Cliff Larsen for carrying this important legislation on behalf of our office, and the Montana Legislature for its unanimous support of the bill.”

The new law goes into effect on October 1, 2013.