I just got a sex offender notification card in the mail.
This is the first time we ever received one of these. It explains that under Alabama State law, the local police department is required to notify the public when a registered sex offender moves into the area. The card is kind of creepy. It says sex offender notification in big bold print across the top and then it lists the name and all the physical information about the guy as well as a mug shot. Then it gives his address right down to the apartment number. It states that he was charged with Child Pornography in December of 2004. I looked up the address right away and was a little relieved to see he wasn't moving into our subdivision, but rather into an apartment complex across from our sub at Bell & Vaughn.

Is criminal history something you have to to list on an apartment application? If so, I would never approve someone with this type of offense if I had tenants with children. No What a scary thought! Cameron's school is in this area. I wonder if they received one of these?? I think I will take the one I got to them in the morning just in case. You can never be too safe these days.


Anonymous said...

OK, let's see. He was convicted of having images of children having sex, or something similar. I'm not saying that he's an angel. But perspective, please. When you walk over to the building, ask how many assaulters live in the building. How many murderers. How many drug dealers. How many wife beaters. You get the drift.

I think that the registry is NOT about informing, but about alarming people, to be honest. I mean, you yourself have EXEMPLIFIED the need to do one of two things:

1. Do away with the PUBLIC registry for all but the most heinous of predators, the ones that actually had a victim, for instance. (The police can still have their own registry and keep tabs on him as well)


2. Create a sex offender colony where all sex offenders who have to register must live, work, and frankly, be segregated from the rest of society. This way, no notifications have to be sent out to scare the populace, nor any worry have to be made by parents who aren't sure what their neighbors will do.

I'm not being alarmist nor sarcastic, but seriously: can you give me ONE good reason the registry exists? The cops can do it better with private registries, in my opinion.

Melissia said...

WHOA! Hold the phone. You don't consider the children in the pornographic pictures he was looking at to be his victims? How pathetic is that!?! Did you ever once consider that the children in the photos might have never been there in the first place if there wasn't such a sick market for that kind of stuff?

The public should be just as aware of some convicted of owning child porn as they are of someone convicted of sex with a child. Do you think child predators who have been caught never looked at child porn before?

You don't know if that person who is "just looking" would ever take it further or not so what is wrong with being safe than sorry?

The regisrty exsists to inform the public. If you have no problem with a 40 y/o man who gets of on kiddie porn living in your apartment complex near your children then great. Be sure to keep him in your neighborhood. I am guessing your husband probably has something in common with him.

Anonymous said...

Well, you are entering "Minority Report" territory with regard to your concerns about his potential to "take it further". And to be honest, you haven't said anything regarding the OTHER criminals who I mentioned, such as the assaulters and drug dealers, who may live in the building but because THEY are not on a registry, they can live as close to you as they want. Do you know where THEY live, incidentally?

Please understand, I'm not demeaning your desire to keep children safe. In fact, I agree that we need to do things much differently when it comes to sex offenders. For instance, we need harsher sentences at the sentencing level.

Now back to the person you are horrified about. The fact is that he already was convicted in a court of law, sentenced, and presumably has been deemed safe enough to live outside of jail. I'm not sure if he's on probation, which technically means he's still under the correctional system, but that's frankly just a technicality.

My ENTIRE POINT was that the registry is NOT doing its job if it's doing MORE to scare the populace. The fact that you reacted the way you did, with fear, trepidation, and a mindset that this man is total garbage that can never change, only makes it more likely that the registry is not about notification, but is the first step toward outright banning sex offenders from society for their registration period.

Now, I don't expect anyone to change their views on sex offenders in the community. We are human and we are protective of children; hence, we cannot trust those who have committed crimes against children. But on the same token, we also have to look at the TRUE dangers. I find FAR greater danger from drug dealers, gang members, drunk drivers, and other criminals who do not have to register than some pervert who was looking a pictures. Again, it's not the repulsiveness of his crime, but how SAFE everyone else is because he's identified.

Frankly, I believe that sex offender colonies are just around the corner. Whether or not that's a good thing for society remains to be seen, but I assume that you would be in favor of it. I don't NEED to hold the phone to read between the lines there.

And yes, I have three kids. I would probably not mind if this man lived in my building, mainly because I KNOW about him. But in any case, my children are taught to be VERY aware of their circumstances. Even though there are half a million registered offenders, that means there are probably 5 million NON-registered offenders, based on Department of Justice statistics.