Sex Offender Notification
The Eastern Washington University Police Department considers the protection of our community from sex offenders of significant importance. The objective of the 1990 Community Protection Act was to provide adequate notice to the community concerning sex offenders who are, or will be attending, working or residing on the campus, and to assist our community members in developing constructive plans to prepare themselves and their children for residing near released sex offenders.
Information that is relevant and necessary to protect the public and to counteract the danger created by a particular offender is released pursuant to RCW 4.24.550.
The extent and content of the disclosure of relevant and necessary information shall be related to:
- The offender's risk classification;
- The risk posed by the offender to the community;
- The location where the offender resides, intends to reside, is regularly found, or is employed; and,
- The needs of affected community members for information that is necessary to protect their interests and safety.
The manner and mode of dissemination is restricted by the standards set forth by the legislature and interpreted by the Washington State Supreme Court in State v. Ward, 123 Wn. 2d 488, (1994) and its progeny.
What is a registered sex offender?
Sex offenders are juveniles or adults who have committed a Class A, Class B, Class C felony or some gross misdemeanors and are required to register for life, fifteen years, and ten years, respectively. Registration laws are covered in RCW 9A.44.130. For the definition of sex offense convictions that require registration see RCW 9A.44.128.
Purpose of notification
An informed public is a safer public. Notification is not intended to increase fear. Sex/kidnap offenders have always lived in our communities. Unless restricted by a court order, sex/kidnap offenders are constitutionally permitted to live wherever they choose. The legislature has determined that the purpose of the Community Protection Act of 1990 is "to assist law enforcement agency's efforts to protect their communities" by providing relevant and necessary information. If "the public is provided adequate notice and information, the community can develop constructive plans to prepare themselves and their children for the offender's release."
The Department of Corrections, the Juvenile Rehabilitation Administration, and the Indeterminate Sentence Review Board are required to classify all sex offenders released from their facilities into levels of risk (low, moderate, or high). These agencies then issue to appropriate law enforcement agencies narrative notices regarding the pending release of sex offenders. The narrative notices describe the identity and criminal history behavior of the offender and shall include a risk level classification for the offender. Upon receiving a narrative notice, local law enforcement agencies review available information and determine what information will be disseminated for community notification. The Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs maintains a public online registry of Level 2 and Level 3 sex offenders who are registered to live in Washington.
These lists of registered sex offenders only contain the names of sex offenders who are obeying their requirement to register with the sheriff's office.
The Eastern Washington University Police Department maintains records of sex offenders who have been brought to the attention of the EWUPD by the Spokane County Sheriffs Office. Additionally, the Spokane County Sheriff's Office maintains an online registry of Level 2 and 3 sex offenders who are registered to live in Spokane County. You can search for offenders by Zip Code or by an offender's name.
Using this public information to threaten, intimidate or harass sex/kidnap offenders will not be tolerated. This abuse could potentially terminate our ability to release this important information to the public.
What do the levels mean, and how does EWU provide notification?
The vast majority of registered sex offenders are classified as Level 1 offenders. They are considered at low risk to re-offend within the community at large. These individuals may be first time offenders and they are usually known by their victims. They normally have not exhibited predatory type characteristics and most have successfully participated or are participating in approved treatment programs. Many are first time offenders. Level I offenders MAY NOT be the subject of general public notification.
Washington State Law strictly limits public disclosure of all Level 1 Registered Sex Offender information. Information shall be shared with other law enforcement agencies and, upon request, relevant, necessary and accurate information may be disclosed to any victim or witness to the offense and to any individual community member who lives near the residence where the offender resides, expects to reside, or is regularly found. Level 1 offenders MAY NOT be the subject of general public notification.
In order to receive specific information about these offenders, an individual must meet certain criteria. EWU Police Department will disclose Level I Sex Offender information upon request to any community member who resides near an offender. Notification will be provided to the faculty for each class in which a Level 1 sex offender is registered.
There is currently one Level I Sex Offender registered at Eastern Washington University.
Level 2 offenders have a moderate risk of re-offending. They generally have more than one victim and the abuse may be long term. These offenders usually groom their victims and may use threats to commit their crimes; they have a higher likelihood of re-offending than the Level 1 offenders. They are considered a higher risk to re-offend, because of the nature of their previous crime(s) and lifestyle (drug and alcohol abuse and other criminal activity). Some have refused to participate or failed to complete approved treatment programs. Typically these individuals do not understand the damage they have done to their victims.
Washington State Law Prohibits the Public Disclosure of Level 2 Registered Sex Offenders except under specific criteria. Level 2 notifications including relevant, necessary and accurate information may be disclosed to public and private schools, child day care centers, family day care providers, businesses and organizations that serve primarily children, women or vulnerable adults, and neighbors and community groups near the residence where the offender resides, expects to reside, or is regularly found. Level 2 offenders MAY NOT be the subject of general public notification.
In addition to the Level 1 Sex Offender requirements above, Eastern Washington University Police Department will place notifications of Level 2 Sex Offenders in the registered sex offender binders that are located at the Dean of Students office, Title IX office and the EWU Police Department (Red Barn). Electronic notifications will also be provided to any facility where children are educated or cared for, including Running Start. Notification may also be provided through other means as deemed necessary.
There are currently no Level 2 Sex Offenders registered at Eastern Washington University.
Level 3 offenders are the greatest risk to the community. Most are predatory, have other violent crime convictions, refused treatment and are known substance abusers. Community notification is the most extensive.
Washington State Law permits notifications about Level 3 offenders that include relevant, accurate and necessary information. This information may be disclosed to the public at large.
Level 3 offender information is available to the public and strategically located in several locations through the campus, including the University Police Department (Red Barn), Title IX Coordinator's Office, Dean of Students Office and the EWU Child Care Center. Names of known Level 3 sex offenders who participate in programs or activities on an EWU campus or attend online classes will be posted on the EWU Police Department website with links to the Spokane County sex offender database website.
There are currently no Level 3 Sex Offenders registered at Eastern Washington University.