Sex Offender Unit
The Polk County Sheriff's Office has a Deputy assigned to manage and ascertain the location of all sex offenders registered in Polk County.
Sex Offender Registration
Starting September 1, 1997, Texas began requiring convicted sex offenders to register with the local sheriff departments in the counties in which they lived. There exist significant rules and regulations associated with sex offender registration, as well as criminal penalties for violation of the many rules.
Any person who has a “reportable conviction” or adjudication or who is required to register as a condition of parole, release to mandatory supervision, or community supervision must register. A “reportable conviction” essentially means a conviction or adjudication, regardless or whether or not the conviction is on appeal, for:
a violation relating to indecency with a child,
aggravated sexual assault,
prohibited sexual conduct,
sexual performance by a child,
possession or promotion of child pornography,
aggravated kidnapping (if the person committed the offense with intent to violate or abuse the victim sexually),
burglary (if the person committed the offense with intent to commit indecency with a child, sexual assault, aggravated sexual assault, prohibited sexual conduct or aggravated kidnapping),
unlawful restraint or kidnapping or aggravated kidnapping if the judgment in the case contains an affirmative finding of use of a controlled substance to commit the offense,
a second conviction for indecent exposure, and other listed offenses
Registration is required with the local law enforcement authority in any municipality where the person resides or intends to reside for more than seven days. If the person does not reside or intend to reside in a municipality, the person shall register or verify registration in any county where the person resides or intends to reside for more than seven days.
If a person required to register intends to change address, regardless of whether the person intends to move to another state, the person shall, not later than the seventh day before the intended change, report in person to the local law enforcement authority with whom the person last registered and provide that authority with the person's anticipated move date and new address. The person must also notify the local law enforcement authority in which the person's new address is located within seven days of moving.
Persons subject to sex offender registration shall apply to the Texas Department of Public Safety for issuance of a special driver's license or personal identification certificate. The driver's license or personal ID certificate must be renewed annually until the person's duty to register expires.
Failure to comply with the Texas sex offender registration requirements is, itself, a criminal offense.
(a) A person commits an offense if the person is required to register and fails to comply with any requirements of this chapter.
(b) An offense under this article is:
(1) a state jail felony if the actor is a person whose duty to register expires under article 62.101(b) or (c)
(2) A felony of the third degree if the actor is a person whose duty to register expires under article 62.101(a) and who is required to verify registration once each year under article 62.058; and
(3) a felony of the second degree if the actor is a person whose duty to register expires under article 62.101(a) and who is required to verify registration once each 90-days period under article 62.058.
(c) if it is shown at the trial of a person for an offense or an attempt to commit an offense under this article that the person has previously been convicted of an offense or an attempt to commit an offense under this article, the punishment for the offense or the attempt to commit the offense is increased to the punishment for the next highest degree felony.
The duty to register generally ends when the person required to register as a sex offender dies. The exceptions are if the "reportable conviction" was not for a sexually violent offense (as noted above), or for prohibited sexual conduct, compelling prostitution of a minor, or possession or promotion of child pornography, or for adjudication of delinquent conduct by a minor. Then, the duty to register generally ends on the 10th anniversary after the adjudication period ends.
For more information on sex offender registry please contact Deputy Kayla Hemperly at 936-329-9004 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.