The Missouri House gave initial approval to legislation that could drastically cut back the state's sex offender registry rolls, reports the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. The proposal faces further votes before it becomes law, but it received overwhelmingly bi-partisan support. The legislation would eliminate mandatory sex offender registry for some crimes including promoting obscenity, and it would create a way for sex offenders to come off the list early based on the severity of offenses.
Representatives say the bill is an attempt to trim back what they see as the state’s far-reaching sex offender registry laws. Currently, Missouri has more than 12,000 people on its sex offender registry. Crimes range from extreme rape cases to consensual sex with minors. The new law could cut as many as 5,000 people in its first year and 1,000 people each year after, according to a fiscal study.