Arizona’s Sex Offender Laws: Recommendations for Reform

November 2020
Tamara Rice Lave, Professor of Law, University of Miami

Executive Summary

This article recommends ways to reform Arizona’s sex offender laws. It focuses first on laws designed to address the danger posed by convicted sex offenders: registration requirements, community notification, residence restrictions, and civil commitment. Relying on the substantial body of research on sex offender recidivism, this article contends that Arizona has overstated the risk posed by convicted sex offenders, and the laws meant to control them do more harm than good. The article then turns to police sexual violence. Although Arizona has done a commendable job of criminalizing sex between police officers and a person in custody, the state needs to take add additional safeguards to better promote the rule of law and protect vulnerable persons.

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Key Recommendations: