Fall is not just the start of the football season. It is also the start of a new school year, and applicants are always excited to find out if they made it into their favorite school for the fall semester. Some prospective University of Washington students may not be so happy to find out, however, that they will now be required to divulge whether they have a violent criminal history or are registered as a sex offender.
The issue of whether to add a criminal background question on UW’s fall undergraduate application was controversial on the campus, and UW administrators were thus very careful to write the question so that applicants with convictions for minor crimes wouldn’t have to divulge that information. The need for such a criminal background question arose after the UW learned that two Level 3 sex offenders were enrolled at the UW during winter quarter 2012.
Both Western Washington University and Eastern Washington University ask a criminal-background question on their applications. The UW criminal background question is: “Have you ever been convicted of a violent felony offense, are such charges pending against you at this time, or have you been required to register as a sex offender by any legal authority in the U.S. or any other country?” The question does not encompass drug or DUI related crimes, it is directed at finding out if an applicant has been convicted of a violent felonious crime against another person.
It is important to note that an applicant with a violent felonious criminal history won’t automatically be denied admission. The application will be reviewed by a committee with expertise on diversity, criminal justice, campus safety and mental health. The committee will make a recommendation on whether to admit the applicant. If the applicant is denied admission, he or she can appeal the ruling.
If you or a loved one is charged with a criminal offense in Washington State, it is imperative that you seek the assistance of a qualified and reputable Seattle criminal defense attorney. The Seattle criminal attorneys that make up the criminal defense team of SQ Attorneys are highly qualified and reputable Seattle criminal defense lawyers that are dedicated to providing top notch, aggressive representation for those arrested for crime all across Western Washington and the Greater Puget Sound region. The team creates success by working with law enforcement and the prosecuting attorney’s office to ensure that all facts and circumstances related to the criminal allegations are considered in creating the fairest, most equitable and just resolution possible in light of all the surrounding circumstances of the given case.