Bill SB-145, passed by California legislative council on August 31, does not legalize any sex with a minor and does not change the implied sentence.
This judicial discretion for sex offender registration is the law for penile-vaginal intercourse when the minor is aged between 14-17 years old, and the offender is within ten years of age of the minor. The current law allows judges to use their discretion to place people on the sex offender registry if they are convicted of having unforced oral or anal sex with a minor 14-17 and are within a ten year age range.
Judges earlier only had this discretion if the voluntary sex act was penile and vaginal. Instead, the bill gives judges the ability to test whether to require registration as a sex offender. This new law will treat straight and LGBTQ+ youth equally. The current state law allows a judge to decide whether to place a young man convicted of statutory rape laws. The law says that for penile-vaginal sex, it's up to the judge to conclude whether or not that person should be placed on the registry, in which vaginal intercourse takes place with a minor, on the sex offender registry based on the case's facts.
SB 145 would eliminate automatic sex-offender registration for young adults sentenced to having voluntary anal or oral sex with a minor instead, a judge would decide.