Sex Offenders

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A federal appeals court has ruled that two Florida laws requiring sex offenders to register with the state after getting out of prison and to submit DNA samples do not violate the US Constitution.

Sex offenders suing as a group challenged the laws as violations of five federal constitutional rights, but the Eleventh US Circuit Court of Appeals disagreed.

The registration law covering sex offenders for life after convictions was enacted after the 1994 slaying of a 7-year-old New Jersey girl whose kidnap, rape and murder by a convicted sex offender spurred the creation of similar laws nationwide.

The DNA collection law requires samples from people convicted of a variety of sex crimes as well as non-sex crimes including any offenses using firearms, murder, burglary, carjacking and elderly abuse.

The appeals court upheld US District Judge Daniel Hurley's dismissal of a lawsuit filed on behalf of sex offenders suing anonymously under the name John Doe.