Illinois Court Strikes Sex Offender Park Ban

An Illinois appeals court has found the state’s law banning registered sex offenders from setting foot in public parks unconstitutional, because the law criminalizes innocent conduct.

The court’s 2-1 ruling reverses the conviction of a registrant who was convicted of walking his dog in a park.

“We hold that section 11-9.4-1(b) is facially unconstitutional because it is not reasonably related to its goal of protecting the public, especially children, from individuals fitting the definition of a child sex offender or a sexual predator,” Justice Mary McDade wrote for the majority. “Nor is it drafted in such a way as to effect that goal without arbitrarily stripping a wide swath of innocent conduct and rights he has as a citizen and taxpayer from a person who has paid the penalty for his crime.”

Read more at Courthouse News.

Read the ruling here.

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