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Packingham had a clean record until he was arrested in 2010 for celebrating the dismissal of a parking ticket by thanking God on his Facebook page.
In North Carolina it is a felony for registered sex offenders to “access” any social networking website not restricted to adults, which includes Facebook, Twitter, and Linked In.
§ 14–202.5, is unconstitutional both on its face and as applied to defendant. In April 2010, Officer Brian Schnee of the Durham Police Department began an investigation to detect such sex offenders living in Durham who were illegally accessing commercial social networking Web sites.
§ 14–202.5, which bans the use of commercial social networking Web sites by registered sex offenders. While investigating the Web site Facebook.com, Officer Schnee found a user profile page that, based upon the profile photo, he believed belonged to defendant. During a subsequent search of defendant's residence, officers recovered a notice of “Changes to North Carolina Sex Offender Registration Laws” signed by defendant describing commercial social networking Web sites that he was prohibited from accessing. On 20 September 2010, defendant was indicted by a Durham County grand jury for violating N.
(I do, however, because I see people act like idiots on Facebook and Twitter all the time, saying things that they’d never say to another human being …things that they can’t get back.)But even beyond the damage and embarrassment factor, there’s the greater risk of victimization by an online sexual predator.
There are over 700,000 registered sex offenders in the United States, and many repeat offenders are using chat rooms and social media to groom children. “Grooming is a method of building trust with a child and adults around the child in an effort to gain access to and time alone with her/him.
Glenn Gerding, Appellate Defender,1 for defendant-appellee. E.2d 146 (2013), vacating a judgment entered on by Judge William Osmond Smith in Superior Court, Durham County. The Court of Appeals vacated defendant's conviction for accessing a social networking Web site as a registered sex offender, finding that the applicable statute, N. Accordingly, we reverse the holding to the contrary of the Court of Appeals. We conclude that the statute is constitutional in all respects. Officer Schnee identified defendant Lester Gerard Packingham (defendant), who had been convicted in 2002 of a sexual offense in Cabarrus County, North Carolina, as a registered sex offender subject to N. On 9 December 2010, defendant filed a motion to dismiss the charge in Superior Court, Durham County, contending that section 14202.5 is unconstitutional on its face or as applied to him. The trial court sentenced defendant to a term of six to eight months of imprisonment, suspended for twelve months, and defendant was placed on supervised probation. The threat of online chats through social networking sites has been a focus of police for some time.