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Knowledge as PowerCriminal Registration and Community Notification Laws in America$
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Wayne A. Logan

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780804757102

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804757102.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM STANFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.stanford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Stanford University Press, 2019. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in SSO for personal use.date: 18 September 2019

Early Laws: 1930–1990

Early Laws: 1930–1990

Chapter:
(p.20) 2 Early Laws: 1930–1990
Source:
Knowledge as Power
Publisher:
Stanford University Press
DOI:10.11126/stanford/9780804757102.003.0002

This chapter traces the evolution of American criminal registration laws, starting in the 1930s when cities and counties rushed to enact laws. While motivated by fear of an increasingly mobile and anonymous breed of professional “gangsters,” the laws in actuality targeted persons with offending histories belying hardened criminal status (a single conviction typically triggered eligibility) and otherwise focused on crimes not typically thought worthy of public safety concern (such as miscegenation). Moreover, the laws swept up newcomer and resident ex-offenders alike, contrary to the ostensible motivating concern over itinerant anonymity. Only later did state governments enact registration laws, with California adopting the nation's first statewide law in 1947; state interest in registration, however, remained limited and sporadic up through the 1980s.

Keywords:   criminal registration laws, history, U.S. law, newcomers, ex-offenders

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