The City of Santa Ana has moved its registration process for most individuals convicted of a sex offense out of locked areas within the Santa Ana Jail and to the unlocked lobby of the jail, according to city officials. This move was recently made following a federal lawsuit filed on behalf of three individuals and California RSOL.
“This is a great victory for all sex offenders who must register in Santa Ana on either an annual or a monthly basis,” stated CA RSOL President Janice Bellucci. “In the past, sex offenders have been falsely imprisoned in the Santa Ana jail for periods up to four hours during their registration process.”
The only registrants who will still be required to register in locked areas of the jail are those initially registering, according to city officials. The reason given is that the City has only one Live Scan machine, which cannot be moved and is located in a locked area within the jail. Registration for all individuals is expected to be moved to the lobby no later than September 30.
The City of Santa Ana has also agreed not to require or even to provide jail uniforms to anyone required to register during the registration process. Registrants, in the past, have been required to wear jail uniforms as they registered and their photos in jail uniforms have been posted on the Megan’s Law website.
“Photos of registrants in jail uniforms creates the false impression that they have recently been released from jail or prison,” stated Frank Lindsay, CA RSOL Treasurer. “Such impressions impede a registrant’s employment and housing opportunities and could invite vigilante violence.”
There are a total of 244 individuals currently listed on the Megan’s Law website. Based upon public data, the total number of registrants in Santa Ana is believed to exceed 300. Of those listed on the website, more than 50 percent are currently pictured in a jail uniform.