San Diego County Plans Public E-Mail Notification On Sex Offenders


E-mails could soon land in San Diego County residents' inboxes alerting them when the state has updated its listings of registered sex offenders in their neighborhoods, says the San Diego Union-Tribune. County supervisors are moving forward with a one-year pilot program that would notify subscribers by e-mail when there has been change to the state's Megan's Law website regarding local sex offenders, about 4,000 of whom live in San Diego County. About 500 of those sex offenders are supervised.

The e-mails would include a link to the website that lists where registered sex offenders are living and other information. The program is expected to cost about $20,000 to set up and about $2,400 to operate each year. State law limits how much detailed information could be included in the alerts. The county is asking the state to allow details on registered sex offenders to be sent in the e-mails, such as home addresses. Supervisor Bill Horn said that perhaps this system could have prevented the murders of local teenagers Chelsea King and Amber Dubois. A registered sex offender is serving a life prison term for the crimes. Notifying residents of sex offenders' names, photos, addresses and offense record is prohibited by state law unless “there's evidence to show this particular offender represents a specific threat,” said Greg Thompson of the county Sheriff's department.

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