Maryland’s 1,200 sex offenders got a letter and a sign in the mail recently, according to a story in the Washington Times.
“Halloween provides a rare opportunity for you to demonstrate to your neighbors that you are making a sincere effort to change the direction of your life,” the letter says.
The sign with the letter has a rather scary-looking pumpkin on it, with the phrase: “No Candy at this Residence,” also on it.
The intermingling of children with so many of their neighbors already has parents on alert Oct. 31. A threat of sex offenders — both real and perceived — adds to that anxiety.
So in Maryland, such offenders are asked to keep their lights off and stay inside, or face probation violations.
And Maryland’s not alone.
In Michigan, state Attorney General Mike Cox is asking that at the very least, parents log on and find out where sex offenders live along their child’s trick or treat route.
Clay County, Missouri, following in Maryland’s footsteps and utilizing a new state law, is requiring sex offenders to stay in, keep outside lights off from 5 to 10:30 p.m. and also post their own signs telling kids to stay away.
And then there’s Lubbock County, Texas, where rather than worry about sex offenders being at home, they’re requiring them to take a class Halloween night.
Here’s the scoop, from myfoxlubbock.com:
“We’re gonna have some presentations by our community partners with Mike Shipman with the LPD. He’s going to be doing a program on sex offender registration and the city ordinance and then we’re gonna have Dr. Shapiro with gateways counseling do a presentation for victim empathy. They’re gonna watch a video and then have a discussion after the video is presented,” says Sex Offender Unit Supervisor Jennifer Mora.
Failure to attend the class is a probation violation, and police will be going to homes of offenders who don’t show up.
I am checking with our local cops to see if they have any special patrolling plans next Friday as well, and will let you know what I find out.