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Woman sues Gov. Lee, TBI director over violent sex offender status, without ever being convicted of a sex crime

By Caleb Wethington

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    NASHVILLE, Tennessee (WSMV) — A Tennessee woman is suing Governor Bill Lee and Director David Rausch of the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation over her status as a registered violent sex offender, even though she says she was never convicted of a sex crime of any sort.

The lawsuit, filed by Jane Doe in early September of this year, is seeking her removal from the sex offender registry.

It states that she has borne the stigma of being publicly labeled as a violent sexual offender for the past seven years despite never being charged or convicted of any sort of sexual misconduct.

“In 2011, she entered a plea of “guilty” to the federal crime of aiding and abetting kidnapping after she, two other women, and a man drove a car across state lines with the man’s infant child in the back seat under threat by the man who had beaten and raped her and threatened to kill her son unless she complied,” the suit said.

Five years later, she was forced to register as a violent sexual offender. The suit reiterates that she’s never been convicted or charged with a crime involving sex.

“Over the year, Ms. Doe has made numerous efforts to explain to the federal court formerly overseeing her federal supervised release, her former federal probation officer, and the TBI that these restrictions are inappropriate and that the label of “violent sex offender” is grossly misleading as applied to Ms. Doe. Her efforts have not been successful.”

The goal of the suit is to lift the “misleading, stigmatizing” label and conditions of being a violent sex offender.

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