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State v. Nation

Supreme Court of South Carolina

July 2, 2014

The State, Respondent,
v.
Anthony Nation, Appellant

Heard February 5, 2014

Appeal From Greenwood County. Appellate Case No. 2011-199726. Frank R. Addy, Jr., Circuit Court Judge.

Ernest Charles Grose, Jr., of Grose Law Firm, and Shane Edwin Goranson, both of Greenwood, and Chief Appellate Defender Robert Michael Dudek, of the South Carolina Commission on Indigent Defense, of Columbia, for Appellant.

Matthew C. Buchanan, of the South Carolina Department of Probation, Parole & Pardon Services, of Columbia, for Respondent.

CHIEF JUSTICE TOAL. PLEICONES and KITTREDGE, JJ., concur. HEARN, J., dissenting in a separate opinion in which BEATTY, J., concurs.

OPINION

Page 429

[408 S.C. 476] TOAL CHIEF JUSTICE 

Anthony Nation (Appellant) appeals the circuit court's decision to statutorily impose lifetime global positioning satellite (GPS) monitoring on him due to his prior guilty plea for a sex offense with a minor and subsequent probation violations. See S.C. Code Ann. § 23-3-540 (Supp. 2010) (enumerating the circumstances in which a court may impose GPS monitoring on a person convicted of a sex offense with a minor). On appeal, Appellant asserts various constitutional challenges to section 23-3-540 and contests the validity of five of our previous decisions involving the South Carolina Sex Offender Registry and statutory authorization of GPS monitoring of sex offenders.[1] We affirm.

[408 S.C. 477]Facts/Procedural Background

In 2000, when Appellant was twenty-nine years old, he engaged in a sexual relationship with a fifteen-year-old female (Victim). Victim reported the relationship to the police,

Page 430

and a grand jury subsequently indicted Appellant for both second-degree criminal sexual conduct with a minor (CSCM-Second) and committing a lewd act on a child under the age of sixteen (CSCM-Third).[2] In 2003, Appellant pled guilty to CSCM-Third in exchange for the State dismissing the CSCM-Second charge. The circuit court sentenced Appellant to fifteen years' imprisonment, suspended on the service of twelve years, followed by five years' probation with the South Carolina Department of Probation, Parole and Pardon Services (SCDPPPS).

In 2005--after Appellant's guilty plea, but prior to Appellant's release from the Department of Corrections--the General Assembly amended South Carolina's sex offender registration requirements by enacting the Sex Offender Accountability and Protection of Minors Act of 2006, commonly referred to as " Jessie's Law." See S.C. Code Ann. § 23-3-540 (2005). In its original form, Jessie's Law read, in relevant part:

(C) A person who is required to register [as a sex offender] pursuant to this article for committing criminal sexual conduct with a minor in the first degree, pursuant to Section 16-3-655(A)(1), or committing or attempting a lewd act upon a child under sixteen, pursuant to Section 16-15-140, and who violates a term of probation, parole, community supervision, or a community supervision program must be ordered by the court or agency with jurisdiction to be monitored ...

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