Cell phone app can give you peace of mind while children trick-or-treat

Tiffany Arvin
Tiffany Arvin
Sgt. Andy Abbott
Sgt. Andy Abbott
Tim Ferree
Tim Ferree

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - On Monday, little ghosts and goblins will be hitting the streets, looking for their tricks or treats. Before your children head out, make sure your family is safe, especially if sex offenders are nearby.

Many times families go trick-or-treating in new neighborhoods. Police say be pro-active know whose doors you are knocking on before Halloween. While Halloween is supposed to be scary, could sex offenders really be among these frightful characters?

"It's terrifying, it's totally terrifying," said Louisville mother, Tiffany Arvin. "I wish there was something they could do to make us feel more safe."

WAVE 3 found out there are no specific laws in Kentucky or Indiana regarding sex offenders and Halloween. The Indiana Department of Corrections has a program called "Operation Safe Halloween", launched in Indianapolis. The intent is to send most paroled sex offenders to evening meetings, to keep them away from trick-or-treating children.

Unlike other states, Kentucky does not participate in the mandatory "lights out" program that keeps sex offenders from answering the door to trick or treaters.

"There is nothing specifically addressed Halloween and the realm of sex offenders," said Sgt. Andy Abbott, LMPD Sex Crimes Squad.

As the ghouls and goblins head out, Sgt. Abbott says know what lurks around the corner. The Kentucky State Police website and the National Sex Offender data base can pinpoint where sex offender live in your neighborhood. In Jefferson County, there are more than 1,100. Now, smart phones are making it easier than ever to know where they are.

"A good tool not only for Halloween but, for any day of the year," said Sgt. Abbott.

Sex offender search app's uses your cell phone GPS to log into the data base and identifies the address and picture of the offenders near the phone's location. Parents we talked to say they would use the app.

'Especially this day and age with technology has brought to us the level of awareness of who is where I think its something every parent should be sensitive to," said Tim Ferree, a Louisville father.

"Yes, I would use it," said Arvin. "It's very interesting it would make me be more safe."

You can find the sex offender app on most smartphones, like iPhones and Androids. Many of the apps are free. Keep in mind, if you don't have a smartphone, you can always go online and see if there are sex offenders near you.

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