Police encouraging check of sex offender registry when planning trick or treat route
SCOTTSBURG, Ind. (WAVE) - As trick or treaters head out to collect their candy, drivers are being asked to take it slow on the roads and that parents are careful about which houses they stop at, so children don’t end up knocking on the door of a sex offender.
Tools are available online to find out where registered sex offenders are in their neighborhoods so parents can decide if they want to put those homes on their route for trick or treating.
Around downtown Jeffersonville, plenty of pumpkins, but not too many trick or treaters hit the streets in one neighborhood on Halloween.
"We thought it’d be busier, but it wasn’t that bad,” said Austin Fertig.
“I guess they go to the bigger neighborhoods,” said Neil Fertig.
The brothers have lived in their home in downtown Jeffersonville for about a year but have lived here in town for the past 10 or so.
Trick or treating as kids, Austin and Neil say they worried about possible candy tampering, not the homes they were stopping at being home to registered sex offenders.
“So honestly, we didn’t really think about it. We probably should have, it was never brought to our attention,” Fertig said.
You can track down people in your city or neighborhood through a statewide database for Indiana to find where sex offenders are registered.
In Scott County, the sheriff’s department provides a tool that shows where they’re living on a map, making it easy to plan out safe trick or treat routes.
“It’s just one more safety feature so that a parent can feel a little more at ease when they let their kid go out and trick or treat,” Scott County Sheriff Jerry Goodin said. "Obviously, we tell people that they need to accompany their children while they trick or treat but this is just a tool a parent can use to avoid those homes if they wish.”
On the map from their website, you can find out what these people look like and previous offenses.
“We’re not here to pick on anybody, we’re not here to make anybody look bad, it’s strictly a safety issue. That’s all it is," Goodin said. "Knowledge is power, by people having the knowledge of where a sex offender lives, they can have the power to decide whether they want to trick or treat in an area or not, which makes everybody safer,” Goodin said.
These online safety tools many say, just make sense.
“Definitely in today’s day and age, everyone’s doing stuff online so it’s a lot more convenient place to go to,” Fertig said.
Find out where registered sex offenders live in Indiana by clicking here.
Find out where registered sex offenders live in Kentucky by clicking here.
Find our where registered sex offenders live in Scott County, Indiana by clicking here.
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