from the Superior Court, Third Judicial District, Anchorage,
Gregory A. Miller, Judge. Trial Court No. 3AN-10-7789 CR.
Garton, Assistant Public Defender, and Quinlan Steiner,
Public Defender, Anchorage, for the Appellant.
L. Wendlandt, Assistant Attorney General, Office of Special
Prosecutions and Appeals, Anchorage, and Michael C. Geraghty,
Attorney General, Juneau, for the Appellee.
Mannheimer, Chief Judge, Allard, Judge, and Hanley, District
Court Judge.[*] Judge MANNHEIMER, writing for the
Court. Judge ALLARD, concurring.
Shayen III appeals his conviction for first-degree failure to
register as a sex offender. To clarify, Shayen did in fact
register as required. He was convicted under AS
11.56.840(a)(3)(B)(i) and AS 11.56.835(a)(1) for failing to
provide written notice to the Department of Public Safety
when he moved from the Brother Francis Shelter (an Anchorage
shelter for the homeless) to an outdoor camping area near
Ship Creek. See AS 12.63.010(c).
appeal, Shayen contends that AS 12.63.010(c) -- the statute
that requires sex offenders to notify the Department whenever
they change their residence -- is unconstitutionally vague as
applied to homeless sex offenders. Shayen argues that because
homeless people, by definition, have no fixed abode, the
statute necessarily fails to give them adequate notice of
when they must report a change of location.
true that the relevant chapter of the Alaska Statutes, AS
12.63, does not contain a definition of "
residence" . Nor is there any definition of "
residence" in 13 AAC 09, the chapter of related
regulations promulgated by the Department. (See, in
particular, 13 AAC 09.900 -- the section of definitions.)
agree with Shayen that, without an explanation or
clarification of how the term " residence" applies
to homeless people, the provisions of AS 12.63 that require
sex offenders to report any change of residence raise
significant legal problems when they are applied to homeless
sex offenders. But though this problem is real, the facts of
Shayen's case do not require us to resolve it.
testimony at Shayen's trial showed that Department of
Public Safety employees -- or, at least, the employees who
dealt with Shayen -- have adopted an ad hoc
definition of " residence" that is tailored to the
situation of homeless offenders. According to this testimony,
the Department did not require homeless sex offenders to
provide a residence address, but only to identify the place
they were staying with as much detail as reasonably possible.
For instance, if a sex offender was staying in a homeless
camp, the Department employee would require the offender to
provide the location of the camp. And if a homeless sex
offender did not know the exact physical location where they
would be staying, the offender would be required to simply
identify the zip code or area of town where they would likely
to the specific facts of Shayen's case, the testimony
reveals that, at various times in the past, the Department
allowed Shayen to file change-of-residence forms that
identified his residence as:
o " Brother Francis Shelter" ,
o " camping in trees by the Valley of the Moon
o " Bean's Café " .
when Shayen was living in rural villages -- places where
there were no formal street addresses -- the Department
accepted such descriptions as " three houses south from
[the Post Office]" and " Paul Beebe's ...