HARRISBURG, Pa. — Most registered sex offenders are well within their rights to live close to a school or daycare—and many do. FOX43 Reveals how often it is happening and what protections are in place to stop repeat offenders.
Each month, daycare supervisor Karla Rivero gets a new batch of mugshots of registered sex offenders that live near her work: Busy Bees Child Care Center in Lancaster.
“If I could tell you the amount of papers we receive in a month, it’s ridiculous,” Rivero said.
Megan’s Law does not restrict where a registered sex offender can live once he or she completes parole or probation, including near daycares or schools.
“It’s definitely uncomfortable and very alarming simply because we can’t control it,” added Rivero. “We have no way of fighting it.”
FOX43 Reveals that 25 registered sex offenders live within a half mile of Busy Bees Child Care and 76 are living with a one-mile radius of the center. Daycare providers, like Rivero, said they want better protections for their facilities.
“There’s people that change. I’m not saying that’s not possible, but we do know that there are people who relapse and are capable of, you know, committing this crime again. So definitely we would want to know more information other than a picture and how many miles away they are,” said Rivero.
Jim Willshier from the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape (PCAR) believes education and awareness can be more impactful than any law.
Rachel Yonkunas: Are there enough protections in place to prevent repeat offenders?
Jim Willshier: That’s hard to answer. I don’t know if Megan’s Law is able to do that in itself.