Raising a family is hard enough without the introduction of possible danger moving into your neighborhood. Learning a sexual offender has been paroled and is going to be living a mere few blocks or miles from your family is scary. These actions will give you the strength and confidence to feel in control and safe about this development.
The sheer panic that set in when you learned this news is understandable. However, realize some offenders are truly repentant and have no desire to get in trouble with people or the law again. This might not make you feel better, but understand that's the case.
Attend Notification Meeting
If your town has one, get yourself and your spouse to the offender notification meeting. An official can explain the sex crimes that the offender committed so you have a better idea of whether this person is an immediate risk to you and what kinds of things you need to protect your family against. Questions may remain after the meeting; if so, determine whether you can contact their parole officer to get more details.
Make a Plan
Even though you may not want to tell your children about this, making a plan for dealing with the offender's presence is a move that will keep them safe. Your plan could include things like:
- Not walking near their house
- Walking with others at all times
- Watching for suspicious behavior
- Checking in safely from home if there alone
In addition to a plan, make sure you give them another talk about appropriate contact and let them know that if anything happens, they should tel you immediately.
Consider Meeting Them
Contacting a convicted sex offender may frighten you, but it could be something which helps everyone involved. You will be able to clearly identify them as they look today, which will ensure that if they are doing something untoward, you'll spot it earlier. You will also be able to notify them that you and the community are watching and while you hope they perform adequately after their release, everyone will be on the lookout for bad behavior. Of course, if you do a meeting like this, bring one or two other adults with you. Refrain from meeting them with a huge group, which could be seen as hostile.
With these pointers, presence of a paroled sex offender in your neighborhood can be handled. Speak with sex crime attorneys for more information, ideas and suggestions