Hidden Nook

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Saturday, May 21, 2005

U.S. Unveiling Sex Offender Website

[Media Source*]

The site won't provide any information not already made available on the Internet by 49 states, the District of Columbia and U.S. territories. But it will be designed to allow someone to do a national search online to determine whether an individual who has been convicted in one state has moved to another.

"With this technology, every citizen and law enforcement officer will be able to search the latest information for the identity and location of known sex offenders," Gonzales said in a speech at the National Press Club.

Some privacy advocates are wary that this system will harm sex offenders who have already served their sentence, although the argument seems pretty weak on grounds that such a system could have prevented the sexual assault and murder of Jessica Lunsford. Since Jessica's case revealed that some sex offenders were prone to change location towards another state or region, such a site would help local authorities coordinate the where abouts of these people in order to help prevent more deaths like Jessica's.

[Sen. Byron] Dorgan introduced legislation to create a national database after authorities arrested a sex offender from Minnesota for the murder of a woman just across the state line in North Dakota. The man would not have been identified on North Dakota's registry, Dorgan said.

Although this website is two months away from being unveiled, it is already proving effective as local authorities are using neighboring state registries in order to catch these villains within their region. States are not required to list their registries with the federal government, but any politician who seeks re-election would find it in their best interests to have such a site listed. Hopefully this site will reduce the number of slayings in this category, especially among children and make America's streets a little safer for the little ones.

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