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Eye On Olympia

Posts tagged: sex offenders

Making sure sex offenders live where they say they do…

After six months of knocking on doors, police across the state say they’ve verified the addresses of more than 13,000 of the state’s 18,000 registered sex offenders.

They’ve also arrested more than 200 for lying about where they lived.

At Gov. Chris Gregoire’s request, the state last year set aside $5 million to pay for sheriffs deputies and police officers to make sure that sex offenders living in communities are where they say they are. The highest-risk ones, Level 3s, are checked every three months. The lowest risk, Level 1s, are checked annually. The plan is to have everyone checked by June.

“In the past, Level 1 offenders were typically sent a letter to verify their address.” said Mike Harum, Chelan County Sheriff. “Today we actually make face to face contact with those individuals to make sure they’re living where they’re supposed to be.”

Harum said his county got $100,000, which was enough to hire a deputy to check on sex offenders full-time. A dozen, he said, have been arrested.

For the state, “this is kind of putting your money where your mouth is,” said Thurston County Sheriff Dan Kimball.

Shades of “Escape from New York”…

State Rep. Al O’Brien, the lawmaker who brought up the pistol-bullet-registration bill referenced in the post below, also wants the state to look into whether it can implant chips into the bodies of sex offenders in order to track them.

From House Bill 1142, which calls for:

(b) An identification of the ways in which current subcutaneous radio frequency identification technology may be used to electronically monitor sex offenders, including an evaluation of the costs and benefits of using the technology compared to the costs and benefits of methods currently being used to monitor sex offenders;

Hat tip: Joe Turner.

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Richard Roesler covers Washington state news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Olympia.

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