Assemblywoman Simon: Sex Offenders Should Have to Identify Status on Social Networking Sites


State Assemblywoman Donna Simon  wants the state to create a law that would force sex offenders to identify their status on social networking profiles like Facebook.

“Anyone who remembers the TV show `To Catch a Predator’ knows they don’t just knock on the door anymore. We can bring a some of the landmark Megan’s Law protects to the Internet,“ Simon said. “It’s almost impossible to open a newspaper these days without seeing another example of a depraved predator hiding his past to victimize another innocent child. Any bit of knowledge that might prevent a tragic crime is essential.”

Simon, a Republican representing parts of Mercer, Middlesex, Somerset and Hunterdon counties, says three recent crimes in New Jersey show the need for the legislation and illustrate how dangerous the Internet remains for children.

Last year a Bound Brook man who had been convicted of exposing himself to teenage girls was caught responding to personal ads on an online dating site. Earlier this month, a Robbinsville man recently was arrested after flying to Colorado to engage in sexual activity with an investigator he believed was a teenage girl he met on Facebook. And a Pemberton man previously convicted of aggravated sexual assault of a child under 13 was sentenced to life this month after traveling to Rhode Island to have sex with an investigator he believed was an 8-year-old girl he met online.

“These horrific, stomach-turning examples show how important it is for parents and children to know whether the person they’re chatting with is capable of committing atrocious acts,” Simon said. “My plan would give one more tool to the law enforcement officers who work around the clock to protect children from sex offenders.”

Simon is sponsoring legislation, modeled after a law enacted in Louisiana last year, that would force anyone required to register under Megan’s Law to identify themselves as a sex offender on social networking profiles. Anyone caught violating that provision could face 18 months in jail and a $10,000 fine.


  1. Most of those who are busted in these online stings are not known sex offenders, so forcing them to wear a digital scarlet letter would do nothing to prevent this, and it’s just another blanket law that puts all ex-sex offenders into the worst of the worse group, which most are not like this, but hey, she’s a politician, so what do you expect?

    The world is a dangerous place to children, and adults, but do I see you banning people from driving cars because alcoholics drive drunk and kill people? Or gang members who kill innocent kids from drive by shootings, to name a couple scenarios?

    It’s idiotic thinking like this is why American’s continue to lose their rights. Let’s force all gun owners to publish on Facebook that they own a gun, post their address, photo, etc, because a couple people who own guns have killed people! Makes just as much sense, and yeah, it’s the same logic.

  2. Maybe she should look at what the courts are doing in other states. They are finding this a violation of constitutional rights. Why waste taxpayers money to fight this in court?

  3. Here’s the issue. Although it is popular to pass such laws it causes more harm than good. 90% of offenses happen with family members and those known to the child. Due to the punitive nature of the registry do you think family members (as a whole) will turn in family members? Not likely. Why? Because directly and indirectly the family is also punished. So, the more punitive you make the registry the more unreported abuses will go unreported.

    Resent federal rulings have found it unconstitutional to require registrants to disclose online. Social media site are used in business and as a major means of communication in today’s world. The law will be overturned and this assembly woman may face legal action as well as her state for it’s passage.

    The Constitution was designed to protect the rights of the few from the actions of the many. History has failed to uphold these principles at times like against blacks, Native Americans and the Japanese. Today the yellow star and witch hunts are against citizens that have paid their debt to society by being labelled Registered sex offender.

    A christian side of things. How could someone call themselves a christian and support the Sex offender registry? It is in complete opposition to the Gospel and the belief in redemption. So, the Bibles against the registry and the Constitution is against it. Adam Walsh died due to a mentally ill person not a sex offender, but are there registry for people living outside of reality? That’s what’s scary people! TRUTH

      1. Really? Then why is it in California where there is the highest number of registered sex offenders the recidivism rates are only 1.9% according the the Department of Justice? I’m a registrant that received a US Congressional award for helping cancer patients and the homeless and although I am a Registrant I am also a hairstylist in Orange County Ca. Somehow me being alone with women for the last 13 years in a salon environment is okay as a sex offender. Oh by the way I haven’t re-offended…after therapy, probation and time served yes most (98.1%) of registrants are rehabilitated. Real TRUTH. So, about your rubbish comment….

  4. Read this for what it is: the inability to make actual changes that reduce child abuse! Assemblywoman Simon is demonstrating her complete lack of care for child safety by wasting time and money like this. First, these bans are unconstitutional, which means a legal battle later, a ton of money was wasted. Second, they are ineffective and demonstrate a fundamental misunderstanding of how child abuse occurs and what is required to lower the rate of child abuse. She is just phoning it in so she can “sound” like she cares. Instead, she is ignoring more than 95% of child abuse that occurs daily because she wants some headlines. Let’s just call it what it is, headline whoring. It’s that simple.

  5. The media, cops and lawmakers have been really great at creating this myth that sex offenders need to be monitored closely because they represent an ongoing and imminent public safety concern because of their likeihood to “reoffend.” The dissemination of personal and private information about sex offenders is ineffectual in regards to increasing public safety.

    The witch hunt against sex “OFFENDERS” is becoming ridiculous. Complete and utter insanity.

  6. Her motives are plain and simple: Put your name next to the words “sex offender” in a press release = instant headlines. Why do we elect brainless morons?????

  7. People forget that the registry is composed with the majority who get thrown on it because of stupid laws like this, or because stupid situations put them there. The few that do need to be monitored and are registered, aren’t even offered the help they really need: therapy!!

    Did this politician forget that drunk college students who pee in public get put on here? Or the kid who was being an smart-aleck and re-enecting a scene from TV (jackass or the like) and smacked a girl on her bum and her parents went litigious?
    Did she forget that the man who accidentally downloaded porn (even though it was stated all models were 18+) and is now trying to find a job may use social networking to help keep him and his family off the streets?
    God forbid we actually help our community instead of witch hunts.

  8. Why no registry for murderers, domestic violence, armed robbers and the like? People who commit crimes with guns should be monitored as closely as sex offenders. Why single out sex crimes?

    1. Why? Well, you have a marketing bonanza tied to anything sex related. You have sex and sex sales, you have violance tied to sex and it sales. So the two together is a dynamic duo that’s non-stoppable for politics and media sales!

  9. I would like to voice my opinion about this matter. Labeling people does no good. What if someone labeled you or any other person. God gave us the ability to chose our paths in life.
    Do you think we chose our paths to become sex offenders?
    Maybe some did but than maybe some were caught out of line on the internet by someone masquerading as some teenaged girl.
    The bible says the flesh is weak and I’m sure yours is also. People caught on adult site’s do not naturally go looking for teenage girls. Common sense would say they would go to a teenage site if they were looking for some kids to communicate with.
    Stereotyping or labeling others is totally unacceptable in society or is this a society of Satan today were Government has the power and we are all under Satan’s rule. And that mean’s every American citizen.
    God is my Ruler and he knows I make mistakes. I don’t know if you have ever made a mistake in your life but some peoples’ nose do get long.

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