NJ’s registered sex offenders — Avoid these homes on Halloween
There's nothing stopping a registered sex offender from opening the door for your kid on Halloween — at least in New Jersey. So it's up to you, the parents, to keep children away from the riskier homes.
New Jersey State Police maintain an easily-searchable database of those required to register under New Jersey's Megan's Law. Each offender's address and photo is available, along with information on the charges that got them on the list.
"You'll know exactly within your neighborhood, within close proximity to your home, what addresses you need to be leery of," Al Della Fave, a spokesman for the Ocean County Prosecutor's Office, said of the statewide registry. "There will be no lamb's blood above the door or any other signal to let you know."
City-Data.com used the State Police information to produce maps of registered sex offenders in nearly every New Jersey town.
The state's site also allows you to sign up for email notifications that will let you know when a convicted sex offender moves within a certain radius of any addresses you register.
To keep our kids extra safe, Della Fave said parents would be wise to accompany their children while trick-or-treating. Or at the very least, only let them go door to door while in groups.
In 2005, the state enforced a curfew for certain sex offenders on Halloween. They also were prohibited from answering the door for children.
New Jersey no longer has these rules in place. Other states have their own "no candy" laws that require registered sex offenders to post signage in their yards advising children to move on.
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Contact reporter Dino Flammia at firstname.lastname@example.org.