Tiers of Iowa Sex Offenses
If you are charged with sexual abuse or another sex crime or if you’re trying to determine whether you’re eligible for sex offender registry modification, your sex offense tier will become relevant. The tier of your sexual offense will also affect your registry requirements.
Iowa classifies sex crimes into three tiers. The “tiers” represent, for lack of a better explanation, how “bad” the offense is deemed to be. Tier I sex offenses have the least onerous punishments and include some offenses done by minors. Tier III sex offenses are the worst offenses.
There are circumstances under which a tier I offense may become a tier II offense or a tier III offense. There are circumstances under which a tier II offense may become a tier III offense.
- Any sex offense that would qualify the offender as a sexually violent predator is a tier III offense, regardless of how it would otherwise be classified.
- Tier II offenses committed against someone under the age of 13 are reclassified as tier III offenses.
- A tier I offender will be reclassified as a tier II offender if they have a previous tier I offense. A tier II offender will be classified as a tier III offender if they had a previous tier II conviction or if they had been reclassified as a tier II offender because of a previous conviction.
Iowa Code 692A explains Iowa’s sex offender registry. Explanations of what offenses fall into what categories are in that chapter.
Tier I Sex Offenses
Some examples of Iowa Tier I sex offenses include:
- Sex acts with a person under the age of 12 when the offender is a juvenile under the age of 14.
- Sex acts done by force or without valid consent when the offender is under the age of 14.
- Sexual abuse of a family or household member when the offender is fourteen or fifteen years old.
- Indecent exposure.
- Sexually motivated harassment.
- Sexually motivated stalking. (In some cases, stalking is in a higher sex offense tier.)
- Any sexually motivated indictable assault committed against a minor.
- Sexually motivated pimping against a minor or involving a minor.
- Sexually motivated pandering.
- Sexually-motivated indictable offenses against family or dependent persons involving a minor.
- Disseminating or exhibiting obscene material to minors.
- Renting or selling hard-core pornography to minors.
- Admitting minors to premises where obscene material is exhibited.
- Possession of child pornography.
Tier II Sex Offenses
Many offenses that might be a tier I offense if committed by a very young offender are tier II or tier III offenses. Here are some examples of tier II offenses:
- Lascivious acts with a child
- Soliciting a minor to engage in an illegal sex act.
- False imprisonment of a minor by someone other than a parent.
- Assault with intent to commit sexual abuse (no injury.)
- Invasion of privacy — nudity.
- Sexually motivated stalking of a specific person under the age of 18.
- Indecent contact with a child who is thirteen years old.
- Lascivious conduct with a minor.
- Sexual exploitation by a counselor, therapist, or school employee of a victim thirteen years old or older.
- Sexual abuse of a corpse.
- Sexually motivated kidnapping of someone who is not a minor.
- Incest against a dependent adult or a minor.
- Sexual exploitation of a minor.
Tier III Sex Offenses
Tier III is the most egregious of the Iowa sex offense tiers.
Here are some examples of Tier III sex offenses:
- Murder if sexual abuse is committed during the offense.
- Sexually motivated murder, manslaughter, or attempted murder.
- Assaultive penetration of the genitalia or anus with an object.
- First degree sexual abuse.
- Second degree sexual abuse involving the display of a dangerous weapon or use or threats of use of force.
- Sexual abuse of someone under the age of 12 by an offender age 14 or older.
- Sex acts done by force or without valid consent when the offender is 14 years old or older.
- Lascivious acts with a child.
- Performing or participating in sexual abuse while perpetrating burglary.
- Sexually motivated burglary or attempted burglary.
- Human trafficking involving sexual abuse or assault with intent to commit sexual abuse.
- Sexually motivated purchase or sale of people.
- Sexual exploitation of a minor.
- Indecent contact with a child under the age of thirteen.
- Sexual exploitation by a counselor, therapist, or school employee of a child under the age of thirteen.
- Sexually motivated child stealing.
- Enticing a minor with the intent to commit sexual abuse, exploitation, contact, or conduct.
If you are convicted of a federal offense or convicted in another jurisdiction under laws that are comparable to Iowa’s laws, you will be subject to Iowa’s sex offender registration requirements while you live or work in Iowa.
Registry Modification Attorney
We can help you figure out what sex offense tier your conviction or adjudication falls into and whether you’re eligible for sex offender registry modification in Des Moines, Polk County, Ankeny, Ames, Johnston, West Des Moines, Waukee, Saylorville, Bondurant, Altoona, Clive, Grimes, Pleasant Hill, Story County, Boone County, Marshall County, Dallas County, Jasper County, Madison County, Warren County, Marion County, Wapello County, Davis County, Ottumwa, Bloomfield, Iowa City, Council Bluffs, and the rest of Iowa.
This blog post is for informational purposes only and should not be relied on as legal advice. The information included here may be out of date or incomplete. Consult with a licensed attorney in your jurisdiction. Reading this site doesn’t create an attorney-client relationship. If you want to talk to us about representing you when you’re considering pursuing sex offender registry modification in Iowa please contact us at (515) 491 6128 and we’ll set up a time to talk.