Laws in Orange County and Irvine barring sex offenders from entering parks without permission are void under state law, an appeals court ruled Friday, according to the O.C. Register.
The decision by the 4th District Court of Appeal reverses the conviction of Hugo Godinez, a registered sex offender who was convicted of a misdemeanor for violating the county ordinance after he went to a company picnic at Mile Square Regional Park in Fountain Valley in 2011. Godinez had been convicted of misdemeanor sexual battery in 2010, according to the L.A. Times.
“Godinez argues state law preempts the county ordinance and therefore his conviction is void. We agree,” the panel wrote, adding that the state Legislature has already enacted a “comprehensive statutory scheme regulating the daily life of sex offenders.”
In another case, the same judges let stand a trial court ruling dismissing a charge against Jean-Pierre Nguyen, arrested while playing tennis at Irvine’s Citrus Glen Park in September 2012.
“We’re going to review our options requesting the Supreme Court of California to review this case,” said Susan Kang Schroeder, the chief of staff for Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackauckas, according to the Aliso Viejo Patch.