Last week in California, the Simi Valley City Council repealed a 2012 ordinance that would have prevented registered sex offenders on the California Megan’s Law website from opening their doors to trick-or-treating children.
City leaders cited the fact that the ordinance would have been overturned in a legal appeal as a reason to repeal it. The ordinance had also banned registered sex offenders from decorating the outside of their homes or front lawns; they were supposed to keep off outdoor lighting from 5 p.m. to midnight on Halloween.
Since the law was enacted, two federal lawsuits have been filed saying the law is unconstitutional. The second lawsuit, filed on September 18, was filed by a Simi Valley registered sex offender and his mother, brother and daughter, all of whom live in the same home. The suit was brought on behalf of the defendants by a group called the Alliance for Constitutional Sex Offense Laws. It named Simi Valley and Simi Valley Police Chief Dave Livingstone as defendants.
Livingstone said the city has never enforced the law; he added that 165 registered sex offenders are listed in Simi Valley on the Megan's Law website.
The first lawsuit challenging the law came in 2012 from attorney Janice Bellucci, executive director of the Alliance for Constitutional Sex Offense Laws, on behalf of five registered sex offenders.
Ventura County Superior Court documents reveal that one of Simi Valley's Megan's Law registrants was convicted of exposing himself to six people at a Thousand Oaks home on Halloween in 2010 while dressed as a woman.