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2015 Florida Statutes

F.S. 944.609
944.609 Career offenders; notification upon release.
(1) As used in this section, the term “career offender” means a person who is in the custody or control of, or under the supervision of, the department or is in the custody or control of, or under the supervision of a private correctional facility, who is designated as a habitual violent felony offender, a violent career criminal, or a three-time violent felony offender under s. 775.084 or as a prison releasee reoffender under s. 775.082(9).
(2) The Legislature finds that certain career offenders, by virtue of their histories of offenses, present a threat to the public and to communities. The Legislature finds that requiring these career offenders to register for the purpose of tracking the career offenders and providing for notifying the public and a community of the presence of a career offender are important aids to law enforcement agencies, the public, and communities if the career offender engages again in criminal conduct. Registration is intended to aid law enforcement agencies in timely apprehending a career offender. Registration is not a punishment, but merely a status. Notification to the public and communities of the presence of a career offender aids the public and communities in avoiding being victimized by the career offender. The Legislature intends to require the registration of career offenders and to authorize law enforcement agencies to notify the public and communities of the presence of a career offender.
(3)(a) The department must provide information regarding any career offender who is being released after serving a period of incarceration for any offense, as follows:
1. The department must provide the career offender’s name, any change in the career offender’s name by reason of marriage or other legal process, and any alias, if known; the correctional facility from which the career offender is released; the career offender’s social security number, race, gender, date of birth, height, weight, and hair and eye color; date and county of sentence and each crime for which the career offender was sentenced; a copy of the career offender’s fingerprints and a digitized photograph taken within 60 days before release; the date of release of the career offender; and the career offender’s intended residence address, if known. The department shall notify the Department of Law Enforcement if the career offender escapes, absconds, or dies. If the career offender is in the custody of a private correctional facility, the facility shall take the digitized photograph of the career offender within 60 days before the career offender’s release and provide this photograph to the Department of Corrections and also place it in the career offender’s file. If the career offender is in the custody of a local jail, the custodian of the local jail shall notify the Department of Law Enforcement of the career offender’s release and provide to the Department of Law Enforcement the information specified in this paragraph and any information specified in subparagraph 2. which the Department of Law Enforcement requests.
2. The department may provide any other information deemed necessary, including criminal and corrections records and nonprivileged personnel and treatment records, when available.
(b) The department must provide the information described in subparagraph (a)1. to:
1. The sheriff of the county where the career offender was sentenced;
2. The sheriff of the county and, if applicable, the police chief of the municipality, where the career offender plans to reside;
3. The Department of Law Enforcement;
4. When requested, the victim of the offense, the victim’s parent or legal guardian if the victim is a minor, the lawful representative of the victim or of the victim’s parent or guardian if the victim is a minor, or the next of kin if the victim is a homicide victim; and
5. Any person who requests such information,

within 6 months prior to the anticipated release of a career offender or as soon as possible if a career offender is released earlier than anticipated. All such information provided to the Department of Law Enforcement must be available electronically as soon as the information is in the agency’s database and must be in a format that is compatible with the requirements of the Florida Crime Information Center.

(c) Upon request, the department must provide the information described in subparagraph (a)2. to:
1. The sheriff of the county where the career offender was sentenced; and
2. The sheriff of the county and, if applicable, the police chief of the municipality, where the career offender plans to reside,

within 6 months prior to the anticipated release of a career offender or as soon as possible if a career offender is released earlier than anticipated.

(d) Upon receiving information regarding a career offender from the department, the Department of Law Enforcement, the sheriff, or the chief of police shall provide the information described in subparagraph (a)1. to any individual who requests such information and may release the information to the public in any manner deemed appropriate, unless the information is confidential or exempt from s. 119.07(1) and s. 24(a), Art. I of the State Constitution.
(4) The department or any law enforcement agency may notify the community and the public of a career offender’s presence in the community. However, with respect to a career offender who has been found to be a sexual predator under s. 775.21, the Department of Law Enforcement or any other law enforcement agency must inform the community and the public of the career offender’s presence in the community, as provided in s. 775.21.
(5) An elected or appointed official, public employee, school administrator or employee, or agency, or any individual or entity acting at the request or upon the direction of any law enforcement agency, is immune from civil liability for damages resulting from the good faith compliance with the requirements of this section or the release of information under this section.
History.s. 5, ch. 2002-266; s. 15, ch. 2004-371.