Operation Halloween Cracks Down on Sex Offenders
While many kids were out trick or treating Wednesday evening, some local law enforcement were going door to door making sure your kids were safe. Parole officers across the state kept a close eye on registered sex offenders as part of Operation Halloween. YNN's Sheba Clarke went along for the ride during some of those face-to-face home visits.
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It's a statewide operation that goes into full force every Halloween.
"We'll make home visits on all of our sex offender paroles making sure that they are in compliance with all of their rules and conditions of their release," said Kathleen McDonnell, senior parole officer in Rochester
Her office sent out eight parole officers to the homes of registered sex offenders in Monroe County.
"They are going to have a curfew of 3pm and they are going to stay inside until the next morning," stated McDonnell.
Ray Diamond is a Parole Officer who enforced those conditions. He made sure his parolees steered clear of children on Halloween. He made at least 27 visits Halloween night alone.
"We'll focus primarily on those persons we think would probably be a higher risks toward children," said Diamond.
They were not allowed to hand candy out. They were not allowed to decorate their house for Halloween. They were not to be in any costume.
Diamond says they even encouraged parolees to put up a sign keeping trick or treaters at bay.
Most of the offenders Diamond visited early Wednesday night were compliant.
He said although the offenders are all aware their parole officer will be their only trick or treater, he still manages to make at least one arrest.
"We've arrested people for being drunk, we've arrested people for doing things with their computers."
Diamond said the parolees are registered sex offenders who have done their time,
but he still considers them a danger to the community.
"They are very dangerous," cautioned Diamond. "All the research indicates that these people have something about them that would cause them to harm a child which is not normal and these people should be taken seriously."