PHILADELPHIA – Acting United States Attorney Jennifer Arbittier Williams announced that Edward C. Kipp, 74, of Philadelphia, PA, was convicted today at trial of failing to register as a sex offender, as required by the Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (SORNA), also known as “Megan’s Law.” Under Megan’s Law, sex offenders are required to register their home, work, and school addresses with state law enforcement, so that individuals can search a database and be aware of convicted sex offenders living, working, or attending school in their neighborhood.
In 2013, the defendant was convicted of possessing child pornography. Because of that conviction, he is required to register as a sex offender with the Pennsylvania State Police, and to verify that registration on an annual basis for 10 years. The defendant must also notify the State Police within three business days if there is any change in his residence. In 2020, Kipp absconded from federal supervised release and moved to a new residence without updating his registration. In September 2020, the defendant was charged by Indictment with one count of failing to register as a convicted sex offender.
“The purpose of Megan’s Law is to provide the public with current information about the whereabouts of sex offenders in order to ensure public awareness and safety,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Williams. “Failure to comply with the Megan’s Law registration requirement is not simply an administrative hiccup; it is a new federal crime. And if these offenders do not comply, we will aggressively prosecute.”
“The U.S. Marshals Service is pleased to lead Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (SORNA) enforcement as part of Project Safe Childhood initiatives to diminish the risk posed by those that have the potential to dangerously endanger children,” said Eric Gartner, U.S. Marshal for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.
“Parents and caregivers deserve to know if a sex offender lives next door,” said Michael J. Driscoll, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Philadelphia Division. “That’s precisely why the registration and notification law was passed, to provide that critical information to the public and better protect children. Convicted offenders are required to advise the state police if their address of record changes. Edward Kipp was well aware of that, failed to do so, and is now being held appropriately accountable.”
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by United States Attorney’s Offices and the Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section (CEOS), Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit www.projectsafechildhood.gov.
The case was investigated by the United States Marshals Service and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Jessica Rice and Nancy Rue.
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