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Court dismisses charge alleging Massena native failed to register as a sex offender

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MASSENA — A 54-year-old Massena man convicted of sexually assaulting two boys at knife point three decades ago in Washington state and charged with similar crimes in Colorado two years later, and who was charged this past fall with failing to register as a sex offender has had that count dismissed.

Village police had charged Mark F. Broer, of 22 N. Allen St., with a felony count of failure to register as a sex offender at 11:59 a.m. Oct. 14 when he stopped at the village police station.

He reportedly had moved in with his mother at the North Allen Street address on Aug. 30, but police said at the time of his arrest the Level III sex offender had failed to register and report his change of address with local law enforcement officials within the statutory 10 days of relocating to Massena from Jericho, Vt.

But the state of New York Board of Examiners of Sex Offenders, in a letter dated in late October, informed Mr. Broer he did not need to register as a sex offender in St. Lawrence County.

“... your case has been identified to the New York state Board of Examiners of Sex Offenders and, after a review, the board has determined that you are not required to register as a sex offender in New York for your October 1983 conviction in the state of Washington for rape and your 1983 conviction in Colorado for sexual assault of a child,” the letter noted.

Prosecutors filed a motion to have the felony count of failure to register as a sex offender reduced to a misdemeanor charge of attempted failure to register as a sex offender and then asked the court to dismiss the case in the interest of justice.

He had been sent to the St. Lawrence County Correctional Facility with bail set at $5,000 cash or $10,000 bond following his arrest on Oct. 14, but the securing order had been changed three days later when Massena Village Justice Eric J. Gustafson released Broer under the supervision of the probation department.

He modified that order again on Oct. 29 and released Broer on his own recognizance after receiving notification from the state’s Board of Examiners that Broer is not required to registered as a sex offender in New York state.

St. Lawrence County Assistant Public Defender Alison B. Appleby told the court in late October it was her understanding sex offenders were only required to register for 20 years at the time of Broer’s convictions. She told the court this week that Broer had filed a notice of claim protecting his right to file a lawsuit against the village of Massena, presumably for a wrongful arrest.

Broer was released from prison in Washington state in October 1994 after serving the maximum sentences for second-degree rape and first-degree attempted rape convictions.

He reportedly was a master’s degree candidate and teaching assistant at Washington State University in October 1981 when he used a knife to force two boys, 11 and 12, to perform oral sex on him.

Two years later, he was charged with two counts of sexual assault for similar attacks in Littleton and Lakewood, Colo.

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