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CA: Can Sex Offenders Legally Live Next Door To Schools?

[ – 9/19/19]

An Olivehurst Grandmother is furious after learning that a sex offender is living just feet away from her neighborhood elementary school.

“I’m concerned about people not being aware of the sex offenders in the area,” said Robyn Gorham.

Gorham says she was stunned to find out how many sex offenders lived just down the street from Cedar Lane Elementary, where her grandson is set to attend.

“There are parents here and I don’t think they’re aware of what’s right in our neighborhood,” said Gorham.

A quick search on the Megan’s Law website shows there are 11 sex offenders living within 3/4 of a mile from the school. Gorham is particularly concerned about one offender convicted of lewd acts with a child 14 or 15 years old, whose home is registered just feet away from the school’s fence.

“The fence is in between the driveway and where the kids are playing, so anybody can say ‘hi’ and put their hand through the fence,” she said.

Gorham adds, “I always thought it was a law that they couldn’t register their address so close to the school?“

So is there a blanket law that keeps all sex offenders at a certain distance away from a school?

“There is no general, applicable law — Jessica‘s Law or Megan’s Law — in California that applies to every sex offender in California the same way,” said Sacramento criminal attorney Mark Reichel.

Read more about how ACSOL’s fight against residency restrictions has made this grandma angry


Join the discussion

  1. Gralphr

    I’ll bet that idiot hasn’t though about there being murderers, drug dealers, and other people in her neighborhood. Its amazing in America murder isnt considered as bad as a sexual crime………..

    • Kero Dresden

      In Humboldt County California, if a SO’s walks past a school there is a really good chance his / shes going to jail for 90 days. An if you even think about living more then 2000 yards you are going to jail. So it doesn’t surprise me she thinks this… when law enforcement and parole are still enforcing it.

      • David

        Why are we not fighting under the constitutionality of property rights ? When did schools and churches become an oligarchy ? How do they preserve the right to dictate to whom can and cannot live on a property they do not own ? An egregious violation of individual property rights goes unanswered. The Constitution no longer serves the people, It serves the powerful with disregard to the rights of the individual. What’s wrong with people today ? Even judges turn a blind eye. We are losing our rights piece by piece.

  2. Jack

    Yeah well somebody needs to tell Gorham that the law was ruled unconstitutional. So we decided we don’t really care what freaks like her have to say about it.

    • Bo

      Incorrect. The constitutionality wasn’t decided becuase they chose to decide the case base on the fact it was pre-empted by state law.

      • Mike

        Hello, isnt there a Ca. Law about fact based laws? Like a law that keeps lawmakers from enacting laws with either not a single situation to show just cause for the law, or to step on people trying to reach the top, an if I’m correct it says almost exactly the same thing in the Holy Bible ” the second group i just mentioned know the truth and hurt people just to have things & no matter how much evidence you show they’ll dissagree an in reality they would rather take the spotlight off of themselves no matter who it hurts, but the truth will come out, there’s 2 other groups of people an a example of one such type is aJudge. Thats because just trial judge alone has seen facts of people being railroaded and the evidence actually proves it but because of certain other laws prohibit some other evidence inadmissible according to law and the supreme court type judge most pass or say other laws are constitutional and some are done with no evidence or believing a lie, the last group is the worst, they make a judgment and when evidence later is shown to them, they don’t correct it because they’ll look bad of embarrassment or weak, all humans need to realize nobody is any better or any worse than anyone else. Isn’t it taught to be honest, tell the truth and do whats right. Even people in authority keep telling men and woman to do what’s right and they don’t walk there talk.

  3. G4Change

    The sky is falling, the sky is falling!!!!!

  4. C

    Can I get a map to help me stay safe from busy body, pearl clutching, Gladys Kravitz bitches like her?

    “Abner! Abner! There’s a sex offender at the Steven’s house!”

  5. kat

    Another case of the uneducated public not knowing that those on the registry have rights, just like she does.

    A perfect time for a California news story on the flip side of the coin, yes registrants are out and about in public, yes, they have served their time, yes they are allowed to live and work and enjoy their lives like anyone else and yes, we are tired of the uneducated public thinking we should all be sent to Siberia.

  6. Eric

    …and so grandma, tell us, how many of those list on your computer have done terrible things to the kids around the school before you became aware of this tragedy? Maybe none?

  7. Tim in WI

    At liberty to live and work as the rest of the people without supervision. The database augmented registration regime does “not impose affirmative disability or restraint in itself.”
    ALL LIES from the council of truth. SOR registration forms do absolutely impact the FUNDAMENTAL individual right to remain silent to questions from administrative branch. The admin branches claim the collection and storage of registrant’s data are key to public safety & assist LEO. The alternate civil purpose ” recidivism prevention” is an informed sentencing opinion.
    Restoration of rights is in law once the sentence (strict liability) served has essentially been ignored. The same goes for use of ex post language ” a person who was in prison for…… ”
    Face it the the republic is dead, overrun by database machines in the hands of Tyrants.

  8. DJ

    Justice Gorsuch recently wrote when referring to government overreach and delegation of power that those convicted of sex offenses (on the registry) are the “canary in the coal mine”….. warning us of danger….. breaches of the Constitution that should concern everyone.

  9. TS

    “Reach through the fence”… Watch many horror films do you? Teach your grandkids stranger danger out of ignorance? How many neighbors are child abusers? DUI convictions? Drive while distracted on the phone? Maybe schools should be isolated so much no one can get to anyone there. Isn’t there a soap opera or talk show you should be watching?

    • David

      Thank you, Janice, for protecting individuals’ constitutional rights and suing the cities that would abridge them!

  10. EducationisNeeded

    A campaign to inform the public about the truth and the truth in these type of issues has to occur or we will continue to butt our heads against the paranoia, misconceptions, and all.

  11. R M

    And how many of you have posted a comment on the mentioned website or the YouTube video at ?

    Comments here are truly appreciated so we can discuss them but who reads these except for “us”?

    • P

      I sent the following email to Shirin, the reporter on this piece:

      Hello Shirin,

      Perhaps you are attempting to be well-meaning in your recent reporting on the “sex offender” next door, but honestly, you seem to be pretty ignorant on the subject. Here a few facts:

      (1) According to the California Department of Corrections (CDC), the recidivism rate for sex offenders is approximately 1.5% over a five-year time scale.
      (2) 97% of all defendants prosecuted for sex offenses are first time offenders. They are not on a registry anywhere.
      (3) 92% of all sex crimes are committed by someone known to the victim, ie. Grandmother, parent, teacher at the school next door, coach, et al.

      Here is the simple math on this:

      1 – (.03*.08) = .9976

      This illustrates that for every 1000 sex crimes, 997 are perpetrated by (1) a person known to the victim and (2) not on a registry.

      By default, for every 1000 sex crimes, only 3 are perpetrated by someone unknown to the victim and on the registry. That is 3 tenths of 1% of the sex crimes committed.

      A better reporter would have done her research and laid out the facts before submitting an inflammatory story designed for its salacious effect. If you have a real interest in a follow-up story with experts on this topic please contact Janice Bellucci. Janice is an attorney in Sacramento who can do a much better job of addressing this issue than the defense attorney you had on your piece. I have copied Janice on this email.

      My suggestion is to get your producer to see the merit in performing real journalism instead of the hack-job nonsense. The outrageous fear-mongering must stop. Please try harder next time.

      Please feel free to respond to me if you wish. I will be respectful and can offer you another perspective to the tired status quo.


      • R M

        Excellent. Any feedback is great.

      • Will Allen

        Great job, I like it. Maybe could’ve been a little nicer and skipped the “better reporter” part or whatever. But great communication overall.

        I think your math is close enough but not quite in line with what may be the actual statistics. For example, if a $EX crime is committed by a Registered person, what % knew the victim? That might not be 92%. That might be 30%. But anyway.

        And I think rather obvious, but if I were a Registered Person living by a school and I wanted to do whatever, I don’t think I’d do it by my home. I’d do it far from my home, by someone else’s home. The safest place from me is near my home. But I guess no one is thinking.

        I continue to be shocked that people never really seem to think or care about people who have shot children with guns living next door to schools. As far as I can tell, people are fine with shooters being in schools even! It seems to me that if you are watching a person in a school that it would not be that difficult to keep the person from molesting someone, but it might be fairly difficult to keep the person from shooting someone. I guess there just aren’t enough shooters to Register and be worried about.

        Same with child abusers too. You can have a person living right next door to a school that HATES it when a child gets into his/her yard. Perhaps the person took a shovel one day and beat a child’s face in with it and left them permanently disfigured. I guess there is no need to be worried about such people living near schools. Probably not enough violent people around to worry about.

        Or how about those DUI people? I love it when they’ve been drinking in a bar all day and drive home right when school lets out. That’s perfect. Much less dangerous than them there “$EX offenders”.

        Meh, I’ve long believed that the dumber a person is, the more likely it is that he/she thinks Registries are great. Amerika is FULL of dumb, hateful people.

        • Mike

          Reconviction Rates

          New York (1996): 34 of 556 SOs (6%) were reconvicted within 9 years of release.[31] 
          Iowa (2000): 14 of 434 (3.2%) were reconvicted within 4.3 years of release [32]
          Ohio (2001): 70 of 879 (8%) were reconvicted after 10 years [33]
          US Dept. of Justice/ Federal (2003): 339 of 9641 (3.5%) were reconvicted after 3 years [34]
          Washington State (2005): 111 of 4091 (2.7%) reconvicted after 5 years [35]
          Minnesota (2007): 10% of 3166 reconvicted after 8.4 years [36]
          California (2008): 121 of 3577 (3.4%) reconvicted after 10 years [37]
          Arizona (2009): 2 of 290 (0.7%) reconvicted after 3 years [38]
          Connecticut (2012): 20 of 746 (2.7%) reconvicted after 5 years [39]
          Nebraska Pre-AWA (2013): 48 of 2816 (1.7%) reconvicted after 2 years [40]
          Nebraska post-AWA (2013): 6 of 209 (2.6%) reconvicted after 2 years [41]
          Michigan (2014): 32 of 4109 (0.8%) reconvicted after 3 years [42]

          Rearrest Rates

          US Dept. of Justice (2003): 517 of 9641 (5.3%) rearrested after 3 years [43]
          Rutgers U. (2005): 4.5% of 917 rearrested after 3.5 years [44]
          Alaska (2007): 3% rearrested after 3 years [45]
          Multistate Study (2009): After 3 years, each state in the study varied in rearrest rates:
          Delaware: 3.8%
          Illinois: 2.4%
          Iowa: 3.9%
          New Mexico: 1.8%
          South Carolina: 4%
          Utah: 9% [47]
          New Jersey (2011): 13% of 274 pre-SOR SOs rearrested within 8 years; 9.7% of 248 post-SOR SOs rearrested within 8 years
          Florida/ New Jersey/ Minnesota/ South Carolina (2012): 153 of 1469 (13.7%) rearrested after 10 years [48]
          US Department of Justice/ Federal (2014): 5.6% rearrested after 5 years [49]
          California (2016): 78 of 1626 (4.8%) rearrested after 5 years [

          Average Annual Rate: Reconviction

          New York (1996): 0.66%
          Iowa (2000): 0.74%
          Ohio (2001): 0.8%
          US Dept. of Justice/ Federal (2003): 1.16%
          Washington State (2005): 0.54%
          Minnesota (2007): 1.19%
          California (2008): 0.34%
          Arizona (2009): 0.23%
          Connecticut (2012): 0.54%
          Nebraska Pre-AWA (2013): 0.85% [51]
          Nebraska post-AWA (2013): 1.3% [52]
          Michigan (2014): 0.26%

          Average Annual Rate: Rearrest Rates

          US Dept. of Justice (2003): 1.77%
          Rutgers U. (2005): 1.29%
          Alaska (2007): 1%
          Multistate Study (2009):
          Delaware: 1.27%
          Illinois: 0.8%
          Iowa: 1.3%
          New Mexico: 0.6%
          South Carolina: 1.34%
          Utah: 3%
          New Jersey (2011): 1.63% pre-SOR SOs; 1.21% post-SOR SOs
          Florida/ New Jersey/ Minnesota/ South Carolina (2012): 1.37%
          US Department of Justice/ Federal (2014): 1.12%
          California (2016): 0.96%

        • Will Allen


          Interesting stats I guess but I’m not really sure why you replied to me. They don’t even answer the question I asked (i.e. “if a $EX crime …”). It’s no problem, I’m just saying.

          And recidivism rates have never mattered. It doesn’t matter if before Registries were created if the rate was 5% or 80%. What matters is if the Registries actually do anything to affect the rates. So it doesn’t do anything useful really to talk about recidivism rates before the Registries or today. The only thing useful is how they compare.

          Everything I’ve seen shows Registries haven’t affected recidivism. It is hard to justify something that doesn’t work. And we know for sure that Registries have harmed Amerika. So why do we have something that doesn’t do anything useful but definitely harms everyone? Part of the answer to that is because Amerika does stupid all the time and for very, very long periods. Take a look at their completely failed War on Drugs. Results don’t matter and they’ll do stupid forever.

        • TS


          Nice roll of the stats. Thanks for those here in the forum for all to see and to keep as needed.

          @Will Allen

          Well said. However, armed with the stats, one can make a cogent argument that others will hopefully receive. Understanding is something different. I still like the stats that break down the 94% of others who are more likely to offend than the person in question in the remaining 6%. When you tell a parent they are 44% more likely to offend against their child or family member, they are not apt to speak much afterward. Do the math, that is over 700% chance (7x at least) of offending.

        • C

          @mike. those are some great stats and I commend u for ur research on this topic. The problem is the people on power always want to twist and turn these numbers and even dont care what they say. It’s all a bunch of political garbage. Look back in the history of time and u will see theres always a group of people who get ostracised by the govt it just so happens that right now its us. The courts are not going to side with us until the perception is removed that every sex offender is going to reoffend against a child. Therefore they are going to continue to drag feet beat around the stats and do whatever else is necessary on their part to avoid changing the sora. That’s just the way it is. I will say that I’m not very confident in the us justice system but I am super thankful for acsol and all of the organizations that are fighting for us cuz allloooott of people are scared to speak out about what’s happening to us. I’m very thankful for that.

        • Will Allen


          Yes, facts and stats are good.

          However, just stating what the current recidivism rates are is not helpful. I know from lots and lots and lots of personal experience! If you tell someone that if a $EX crime is committed, 95 times out of 100 the person who did it will not be Registered, they will say, “Good, that means Registries are working.” If you say 99 times out of 100 the person who did it will not be Registered, they will say, “Good, the Registries are working even better than I could have imagined.”

          So the recidivism rates just don’t matter. In fact, I would say it is better if a Registered person does offend because that obviously shows that the Registries failed. But again, only a comparison of before and after the Registries can matter.

          I’ve said before that Registries do make “common sense” and they seem sensible to me. But only on the surface. Instead of recidivism rates I like to show the single, trivial example that is truly indisputable proof that Registries aren’t needed at all. And that example is say you have 2 neighbors and 1 of them is Registered and the other is not. Knowing that does not help you AT ALL. I defy anyone to prove otherwise.

          Of the 2 people, you have no idea:

          Which has committed more $EX crimes.

          Which has committed more dangerous crimes.

          Which is more likely to commit a $EX crime today.

          Which is more likely to commit a dangerous crime today.

          Which is more dangerous today.

          You just don’t know at all. The Registry has done nothing for you. Except I suppose make it more likely that you will allow the un-Registered person to babysit your children or whatever. Then while you are harassing the Registered person, the un-Registered one will be molesting your children. We’ve seen that exact thing (i.e. un-Registered people molesting) happen how many millions of times?

          Registries aren’t needed. If they were, there are zero legitimate excuses to not have created 100+ other Registries well over a decade ago. These criminal regimes also have not been able to resist playing with their Registry toy and they’ve created clearly illegal and immoral tag-along “laws” built on top of their toy. No American can think that is okay.

          Registries are immoral and anti-American. They are an act of war.

        • TS

          @Will Allen

          Well said. I will take that argument all day long and use it where I can when needed.

  12. Anonymous

    Those who are Not on the stupid “sex offender registry” should move to where there are no red dots on this map.

  13. Ed P.

    Has anyone reminded grandma that it is illegal to use the registry for anything but her own use? If she is out stirring up the community, protesting, etc., she can be found guilty too. At some point, government will realize the cost to maintain the registry is prohibitive to keeping all of us safe.

    As a side note, I wonder if she voted for the man who grabbed a woman’s private parts? And then bragged about it.

    • C

      My support for your comment ends at your not so cleverly veiled Trump attack which begs the question: how many of the state and federal politicians YOU voted for brought relief to Registered Citizens?
      As a veteran and an RC, I can tell you he’s done more for vets and felons than any administration since these issues became important to me over the past 30 years. In fact, you can directly blame the Clintons and Obama for causing more problems for us overall. But you go right ahead blaming Trump and his supporters for your troubles despite the fact that you can’t name a single thing he’s done that affects you directly.
      As for anyone on this board calling POTUS a “pussy grabber,” ask yourself: what would some people call YOU in public?

      • R M

        I’m a vet and a felon and did not vote for Trump or anyone for that matter as “they” say I have no say (can’t vote). Trump (and previous Presidents) have done NOTHING for me period. Any positives in the registry hell have come from us.

        Are you saying because he is a President that his past sex ridden doesn’t matter?

  14. Jack

    You know it really is becoming clearer to me that only abnormal people really use the registry in the same manner the woman from the article does. People like her need to be in the record for when this issue eventually makes it to the supreme court.

  15. James I

    I just would like to note again and remind everyone…WITHOUT JANICE this woman would have had her way against us and many, many of us would be forceably thrown out of our homes.

    I feel badly about somethings also…for instance, I thought the Oakland IML case, put together by Janice, was well written, on point, cogent and…with all the obvious deep thought and effort that went into it…was a winner, was poised to change a broad are of United States Law…

    Were there any justice in the world this is what would have happened…the is what Ms. Bellucci deserved…all the love and respect and accolades possible.

    But it was not to be.

    Still, her victories in regards are Presence Restrictions was in fact bigger and more important to us.

    Long may our flag (Janice and Chance) wave!

    Best Wishes, James I

    • C

      God bless Janice!!!

    • P

      Janice has been awesome on the topic of presence restrictions. For her amazing work and success on our behalf, I am truly grateful and filled with admiration. That said, this fight is much bigger than where SOs can or cannot live.

      We need much bigger and more powerful advocates to fight the SORNA constitutionality issues. The courts are beginning to see the injustice but we need more big players like the Southern Poverty Law Center, the ACLU, etc. to push this fight and get the registry thrown out.

      Janice has certainly made huge strides in this fight! Now we need to solicit more horsepower to join us. If I had the money I would write the checks necessary. Sadly at this point I do not.

  16. The Vampire

    Like i said before. The registers list is no good! I watched a you tube vid and the cop in the video said the reg list needed to be tweeted a little.But he still want it! Cause in his words. He has little kids who walk to school. And would want to know if a sex offender was living close to the school.Than i was thinking what would that matter if some sex offender was living by a school. Is that father going to start walking with his kids to the school which would be the smart thing to do.Same for that useless grandma that got 5 mins of trying to get the people to get out the pitch forks and start trouble. If the old bag is that worried get off your a$$ and take your grand brats to school and pick them up! What is so funny if i was to meet that old bag she would not even know i am on the sex list. The only way i know of is to mark the person like the Nazis did too the jews. The reg list only marks the house. If you drive to a different state and stay in a motel the list is useless.same as if you stayed in your own state No one will know you or that you a sex offender. Then i watched a vid of some guy who said he was abuse and he wants the list too. So it can punish people.cause he can never get over his (note Feelings) This why law makers make so dumb laws it based on feelings and money! But Feelings do get hurt! But people need to let go and move on with life! But the sex victims are seeing that the cops dont pay them for stepping up.So they going to sue the schools and churches Just like larry ness bs in michigan. So they blame larry ness and now blame the school to get money for (Feelings) what a great sex list. Vampire out! Night all keep your neck covered

    • Mike

      Well how about this, if a sex offender lived next to a school or he lives miles from a school how is a law or registry going to stop a person from going to any school or park if the person wants to grab a child? There was a news story years ago of a guy who had been in prison for rape, when he got out he lived in Fresno, ca. And he drove North to turlock or Modesto and kidnapped and raped a girl and dismembered her body in Del Puerto Canyon, tradgic yes but the point is he lived in Fresno and no law or registry (if he was on it) would’ve stopped him.

  17. Facts should matter

    ” Gorham is particularly concerned about one offender convicted of lewd acts with a child 14 or 15 years old, whose home is registered just feet away from the school’s fence. ”

    This is why they include the offense on the website along with the red and blue map pins. It’s not done to make an “informed decision.” It’s done on purpose to make us all appear more menacing and an “on-going” existential, credible threat. The public reads “what they did” and it creates intentional hysteria, panic and chaos. Then the lawmakers and LEOs can sit back and reap the benefits from all the unwarranted fear and outrage directed towards RSOs. This granny is Exhibit: A. She feel for it hook, line and sinker.

    They lost their argument for it being a “public safety tool” once they began to list the offense. Now it’s just intentional shaming along with antagonizing the public with provocation.

    • Waste a moment

      To double up on your comment.
      A homicide was committed recently near my apartment, which due to the registry is the only one that would rent to me, but that’s a whole different issue.
      Anyway, I went on this “Crimewatch” site to see if any other violent crimes had been committed recently in this area.
      You know how they promote their site?, “ Crimes and sex offenders by location” . Point being that people don’t need the registry to locate an offender. We are posted as forever criminals on these sites. It is used as a voyeur type of info site. We are being used as a hook to get people to look at these sites. This is discraceful. Everyone knows with the morbid curiosity of the public, which, BTW, is why many of us ended up in trouble with internet offenses, that people will go to these sites just to see where Crimes are, and will end up seeing where every local RSO is. Again I say, why are we criminals for life.

  18. US citizen

    I am on registry. I think it would be practical to say for the first 10 or 15 years, if the case involved a minor, not living across the street from an elementary or middle school or with a view of school property might make sense. After that out it’s just more practical to deal with general situations. The average 25-year-old is more risky than a person on the registry 2 decades after their crime. The violent and repeat offenders people imagine are already severely punished and managed. Cases like exposure to adults should not suffer this unnecessary enforcement.

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