ORLANDO, Fla. – An Orange County judge ordered a convicted sex offender released from jail on Thursday after attorneys said they exhausted their efforts to find him an assisted living facility.
Joseph Berry, 54, currently faces charges of failing to register as a sex offender.
He was originally arrested for performing a lewd act in the presence of a child in 1994.
Berry was found guilty, and as a result, he was ordered to register as a sex offender.
Court records show Berry did not register for at least 29 years, and he was arrested for similar charges over that time.
A News 6 investigation revealed he was arrested six times since 2015 for indecent exposure and lewd conduct.
According to court records, all six charges were dismissed after Berry was found not competent to stand trial.
Records show Berry was involuntarily committed to the state psychiatric hospital twice, and the staff has not been able to effectively treat him.
In October, his defense attorney won an attempt to release Berry to the Homes Sweet Homes Assisted Living Facility in Orlando, but a News 6 investigation revealed the home was not licensed by the state, and it was served a violation notice by the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration.
He remained in jail until Thursday.
In court, Judge Alicia Latimore ordered Berry to receive mental health treatment as needed.
“All Efforts are exhausted in finding placement,” the clerk wrote in Berry’s court docket. “(The) defendant is released on conditional release over state’s objection.”
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