Safeguard against sexual predators

Published 10:18am Tuesday, April 24, 2012

The number of sex offenders in Shelby County has risen slightly from last year to break the 200 mark.

Last year, 189 sex offenders were registered in the county; this year, there are 200 — increasing by 11 the number of sex offenders our patrol deputies must keep up with.

While the law does not require our deputies to visit registered sex offenders, the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office schedules visits twice a year to hold offenders accountable.

We applaud the sheriff’s office for doing what it can to keep sex offenders in check and verify that they are living where they should be.

However, the sheriff’s office cannot keep a constant eye on every offender in the county. Check out our map of registered sex offenders on page 10A and the corresponding list of names and addresses. See if any of those offenders are living in your neighborhood or your city.

If so, take basic measures to stay safe. Be sure to alert your neighbors and family members so they will know to watch out as well.

Also, take advantage of the sheriff’s office website at Shelbyso.com. You can keep up with the sex offender registry anytime, allowing you to see if the number of offenders has changed in your neighborhood or city.

Also on page 10A, you can see the definitions of various sexual crimes. If you do have a registered offender living nearby, you can know what he or she was charged with.

However, don’t let watching out for registered offenders blind you to those who might not be registered.

Go over ground rules with your loved ones and your children. Make sure they know the difference between appropriate and inappropriate behaviors.

We must take advantage of the information we have at our fingertips in order to protect potential victims from sexual crimes.

The We Say is the opinion of the Shelby County Reporter editorial board.

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  • Rudy101

    “If so, take basic measures to stay safe…”

    What basic measures are you talking about? I mean, the “take measures to stay safe” is synonymous with how the registry is supposed to be used, but is never expounded on.

    Does it mean, isolate the person on the registry?

    Does it mean, avoid the person on the registry?

    Does it mean, ensure the person on the registry is excluded from the community or community events?

    Or does it mean all those things?

    What happens when the community is taking “basic measures” to be safe and the person the community is protecting themselves from is not dangerous?

    But that is the beauty of the registry, isn’t it?

    Everyone on there is as dangerous as the public thinks so. I mean, how else could you pass law after law, every single legislative session that restricts a person from the community and then don’t allow any challenges, hearings, or appeals?

    See, your problem is, you people FEEL like your protecting the community. You will repeat that mantra over and over. Whether it is true, or whether you are actually stripping legal protection of the offender and making the offender the focus point of the community’s frustration which results in crimes being committed against a registered offender doesn’t much matter.

    In short, that little list you have that can’t do anything to prevent crimes ONLY makes the community MORE dangerous.

    Did you know that no law that strips a person of safety and/or security doesn’t have to be followed?

    You never consider the obvious, do you?

    I know you are too cowardice to publish this opinion. You love your police state too much to let a little thing like criticisms get in the way.

    (Report comment)

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