An elderly bed-ridden registered sex offender will not be allowed to move in with relatives in a Montgomery County home for end-of-life care after Shenandoah city leaders declined to amend an ordinance that restricts residency.
The daughter of the 79-year-old man sought a waiver to the ordinance adopted in 2018 which restricts registered sex offenders from living within 1,000 feet of a child safety zone per state law. That zone includes schools, parks and public swimming pools. City Attorney William Ferebee said neither state law nor the ordinance provides a method for making exemptions.
The proposed change to the city ordinance, Ferebee said, would allow the police chief to make that decision on granting that exemption and for how long that exemption would be in place.
Council members appeared to be sympathetic to the end-of-life care situation but agreed the amendment could put the city at risk in the future. The home, Ferebee said, is about 900 feet from the city’s toddler park.
“Unfortunately, with this 79-year-old who is bedridden, it doesn’t change the fact that they are still a sex offender,” Councilman Ted Fletcher said at a board meeting earlier this month. “That’s what state law says and that is what happens when you break the law.”