Criminal Justice Update
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Criminal Justice Update

Initiatives strengthen sex offender monitoring


Attorney General Mike DeWine has announced  is announcing three new initiatives to better monitor Ohio’s about 19,000 convicted sex offenders.

The Attorney General’s Office will provide county sheriffs with new technology that will allow sex offenders to update their registration information online. Offenders then will have five days to confirm that information in person. The measure will expedite the reporting process and give sheriffs’ staff members an idea of when offenders should appear.

The office also will provide sheriffs’ investigators with a smart phone application that enables them to search for sex offenders’ addresses within a quarter-mile radius of the phone. This will be especially helpful in sexual assault or missing person investigations. Investigators who conduct on-site compliance checks can immediately upload the status of a noncompliant sex offender directly to the state sex offender database.

Agents with the Bureau of Criminal Investigation’s Crimes Against Children Unit will work with the U.S. Marshals Service to locate and extradite noncompliant offenders who in the past may not have been pursued because of budget limitations.

The new efforts are expected to begin within the next several months. They are funded in part by a $269,842 grant from the Department of Justice.

The Attorney General’s Office also has launched a campaign to publicize warrants for noncompliant sex offenders who have been convicted of crimes against children. Since the campaign began earlier this year, half of the offenders profiled have been accounted for. 

Part of the Attorney General’s Crimes Against Children Initiative, the campaign provides media outlets with details and a photo of a wanted sex offender each week. Several arrests have resulted from tips generated by the coverage. Other suspects were arrested thanks to good follow-up work by law enforcement. Officers with suggestions on an offender to profile can call the Attorney General’s Communications Office at 614-728-4946.