The sexual offenders registry is coming “very shortly”, according to National Security Minister Marvin Dames.
In an interview with reporters outside the House of Assembly on Wednesday, Dames said, he has personally spoke with Attorney General Carl Bethel and the Bahamian people can expect to see that registry before the end of the year.
“We still don’t have it but it’s coming,” Dames said. “We will bring it, and we’re bringing it very shortly. The Attorney General’s office will have to do somethings and the AG and I have had a conversation on that already, and we will give the notification that we would wish to proceed as quickly as possible with that registry. And I can assure the Bahamian people, that that registry will come, and it will come this year, very soon, very soon.
“We had any number of significant bills that we had to deal with, especially this compendium of financial bills that we had to get through to meet certain requirements. So, this is very important to us – the registry.”
The call for a sex offenders registry was a direct result of the gruesome murder of 11-year-old Marco Archer in 2011 by Khoffee Goodman.
In 2013, the then Christie Administration moved an amendment to the Child Protections Act named Marco’s Law.
The amendment provides for a Marco Alert, similar to the AMBER Alert in the United States.
The sexual offenders register would place all persons who are convicted of sexual offenses on the proposed list.
On Monday, Goodman, convicted child rapist and killer, was sentenced to 55 years in prison.
Supreme Court Justice Carolita Bethel ruled that Goodman, 42, would not face the death penalty for the murder of Archer.
Additionally, seven years will be slashed from Goodman’s sentence for time already served.
This is the second time Goodman has been convicted and sentenced for killing Archer. Back in 2016, his previous conviction and death sentence were overturned by the Court of Appeal (COA), due to pre-trial publicity.
No stranger to the courts, Goodman was also convicted back in 1993 for the sexual assault and murder of a 10-year-old boy. During that trial he confessed to raping the boy but not to the murder and was subsequently sentenced to three years for that crime.
In 1996, he was sentenced to 18 years in prison for the attempted murder and bodily harm of another 10-year-old boy.
Goodman said he intends to fight the courts on its most recent ruling.