No registry set up overseas for offenders
In many jurisdictions in the United States, people can find out with the click of a mouse which convicted sex offenders are living in their neighborhoods.
That access is not extended to Americans living at U.S. military bases overseas.
For a sex offender convicted in a military court-martial and not discharged — as was the case with Brian Carroll, an airman at Misawa Air Base, Japan — his criminal history would be contained in his military record, military officials said.
But Capt. Johanna Astle, 35th Fighter Wing chief of military justice, said there’s no system in place for convicted sex offenders — military or dependents — to formally register on base and no community notification procedures.
The issue surfaced about a year ago at Yongan Garrison, a U.S. Army post in South Korea, when residents discovered that a convicted sex offender who had met his obligation to register in the States was living on base.
The offender, Army spouse Carlton Discavage, pleaded guilty in 2003 to felony indecent soliciation of a child, according to the Justice Department’s national registry. He had arranged a sexual rendezvous with what he thought was a 15-year-old girl at an Illinois mall, but the girl turned out to be an undercover cop.
Base officials told Stars and Stripes then that Defense Department regulations did not specifically address registration of sex offenders living overseas.
A change is being discussed.
Astle noted the Justice Department “recognizes a registration process should be implemented for sexual offenders who move to a foreign country. Implementing a process to register in the foreign country is a process DOJ is currently addressing.”
A provision under the Justice Department’s proposed guidelines for states to comply with the Adam Walsh act deals with sex offenders at U.S. military bases overseas — to a certain extent.
The guidelines state that “a sex offender who goes abroad may remain subject in some respects to U.S. jurisdiction. For example, a sex offender may be leaving to live on an overseas U.S. military base … In such cases, notification about the individual’s status as a sex offender and intended activities abroad is of interest to federal authorities … .”
Although the guidelines lay out requirements for notification of “jurisdictions” offenders are moving to “outside the United States,” they do not mention anything about an obligation of officials in those jurisdictions to notify the residents.