ALBANY, GA (WALB) - Law enforcers around the state are teaming up on an effort to keep children safe on Halloween. They'd been conducting verification checks all week at registered sex offenders' homes across Georgia, with more checks to follow on Saturday.
The Dougherty County office of the Georgia Department of Community Supervision will make sure that more than 100 of the county's registered sex offenders don't interact with trick or treaters. Those offenders will be locked in their headquarters on Halloween evening.
"The high risk offenders will be reporting," said Coordinating Chief Supervision Officer Chief Kimberly Persley. "And then some of our officers will also be out conducting those field interviews."
There are approximately 355 registered sex offenders in Dougherty County. As part of "Operation Watchful Eye", the Georgia Sheriff's Association has collaborated with state supervision by visiting the registered sex offenders and verifying their court-ordered compliance.
"Their addresses, their phone numbers, their vehicles driven, places of employment, said Captain Craig Dodd. "So that we make sure that everything we have is up to date."
The Lee County Sheriff's Office also verified their county's approximate 30 registered sex offenders the same week. Lee Co. offenders will be check and are ordered to stay inside at home or work.
"Focusing very hard on the ones in neighborhoods on Halloween. So we will probably be hitting them more than once," said Investigator Shawn McTyeire. "We will be doing that all afternoon till about nine on Halloween."
Registered sex offenders cannot be involved in trick or treating, and their home lights must be off. The compliance checks show that law enforcement is enforcing those requirements.
"It is something we constantly do with each agency to insure compliance and to insure the safety of our community," said Persely.
The Sheriff's Association said the checks were not a statewide roundup of sex offenders, but a showcase to make sure compliance with the law is followed.
You can see where registered sex offenders live in your community by checking out the sheriff's office and state registries below: