The County of Riverside unanimously passed an ordinance on October 18 that prohibits anyone listed on the registry from celebrating Halloween in their own home! This is a violation of registrants’ constitutional rights, including but not limited to, the First Amendment. Riverside County specifically prohibits registrants from (1) decorating the dwelling in which he/she lives, (2) leaving on any exterior decorative and ornamental lighting and (3) answering the door to children who are trick-or-treating.
Riverside County passed this ordinance under an emergency provision which allows the ordinance to take effect immediately. According to County documents, immediate passage and enactment of the ordinance was required because “sex offenders pose an immediate threat to children trick-or-treating on Halloween”. There are no known cases of any child being attacked by a sex offender on Halloween while trick-or-treating.
Similar ordinances were passed last year by Tulare County and the City of Orange.