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Laws Show Exceptions To How Close Sex Offenders Can Live To Scho - KOAM TV 7

Laws Show Exceptions To How Close Sex Offenders Can Live To Schools

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Technology makes it easier to track sex offenders near your home or your child's school, but some people are surprised just where offenders are allowed to live. 

"I'm concerned because there is a bus stop with many children in this man's yard, and my neighbor told me he's a sex offender so I looked it up." 

This Four State woman doesn't want to reveal her identity, but she contacted our newsroom after finding out a registered sex offender not only lives on her street, but right down the road from a day care. After doing some checking we found out it is all perfectly legal.

"I don't think there should be any statue of limitations protecting these individuals," the woman said.
 
But according to the State of Missouri there are. Steven Bach works for the Prosecuting Attorney's Office in Newton County, and it's his job to make sure all sex offenders in the county are following the rules. He says the crime the woman is worried about happened out of state back in 2004 meaning the man convicted of it has every right to live there.

"If your conviction is on or before August 28, 2008 you're allowed to live by a school or day care, the 1000 foot rule does not apply to you, if your conviction is an in-state conviction, the date on that is August 28, 2004," Bach said.

Convicted sex offenders after those dates cannot live within 1000 feet of a day care or school or loiter 500 feet from a park. That is unless they lived there before the school, park or daycare opened. 

"If you're living in your residence before the day care is open, you are exempt from that 1000 foot rule of a school or a day care," Bach said.
 
But whether it's legal or not, the woman I spoke with says she doesn't want a registered sex offender anywhere near her children. And while she understands the varying degree of sex offending, she says the worst cases involving sex with young children should stay behind bars.

"Even if they have to have their own island somewhere, where they can just take care of themselves, they need to be removed from society completely."
 
If you want to see if a sex offender lives in your neighborhood, there are several websites available to find the type and date of the sex crime:

Click here to go to the Missouri State Highway Patrol's Sex Offender Page.
Click here to visit the Newton County Sheriff's Office.
Click here to visit City-Data.com.

 

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