U.S. Virgin Islands – V.I. Attorney General Ariel Smith has announced that 63-year-old Ivan J. Chinnery, a registered sex offender, was arrested by V.I. Dept. of Justice (VIDOJ) Special Agents (SID), and the Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (SORNA) unit on St. Thomas. Chinnery was arrested for failure to comply with registration requirements for sex offenders in the Virgin Islands.
Chinnery, who is homeless, is a registered offender who failed to appear in person for registration at the Leander Jurgen Command Police Station on St. John, U.S. Virgin Islands. He has no fixed address and is therefore required to register weekly as required by law. VIDOJ agents arrested Chinnery on February 1st at Leander Jurgen Command Police Station in Cruz Bay, without incident.
Chinnery appeared for his Advice of Rights hearing in V.I. Superior Court on February 2nd before Honorable Magistrate Judge Paula D. Norkaitis. Judge Norkaitis found probable cause to charge Chinnery with Failure to Register as a Sex Offender V.I.C. § 1722 and he was released on $10,000.00 Unsecured Bond. Judge Norkaitis ordered that Chinnery must not leave the islands of St. Thomas/St. John/Water Island without the court’s written permission. Judge Norkaitis also stated that Chinnery must report to the Office of Probation at the Leander Jurgen Command once per week and he must also register as a sex offender every week on Wednesdays at the Leander Jurgen Command Police Station.
Chinnery was convicted in V.I. Superior Court in February 2012, for the crime of Unlawful Sexual Contact 1st Degree. Pursuant to Chapter 86, Section 1724(d) of Title 14 of the V.I. Code, Chinnery is required to appear once every week at the Virgin Islands Dept. of Justice (VIDOJ) to keep his registration current, until he declares a permanent residence He is registered as a Tier 3 sex offender and therefore required to appear once every 90 days from his initial registration date throughout his lifetime.
A team of Special Agents from the VIDOJ and Sexual Offender Registry (SORNA) unit, with the assistance of U.S. Marshals and other local and federal agencies, routinely conducts unannounced inspections of registered sexual offenders to verify their locations and other personal information, such as their work and home addresses. The Attorney General/VIDOJ is legally mandated to administer and enforce the sex offender registration laws. A registered sexual offender must notify the VIDOJ of his/her name, residence, temporary lodging information, vehicle information, Internet identifiers, telephone numbers, school information, and employment status. Registered sexual offenders in the territory are prosecuted by the Attorney General for either failing to register or not keeping their registration current, as required by this law, and if convicted, the penalty is a fine of not less than $3,000.00 or more than $5,000.00, or imprisonment for not less than three months nor more than two years, or both. The law also provides that it is an offense to assist a sex offender to evade the registration requirements, which carries a fine of not less than $1,000.00 or more than $2,000.00, or imprisonment for not more than six months, or both.
The sex offender registry is available for public view at https://usvi.nsopw.gov.