In Utah, at least 640 registered sex offenders are not living at the addresses they’ve provided to the state, reports the Salt Lake Tribune. Though Congress has required states to keep a sex offender registry, it has not provided money to keep tabs on every offender. “When we find out someone is in noncompliance, we don’t have the resources to send out a group of fugitive finders and track people down. It just doesn’t happen,” says Scott Carver, director of the Utah Department of Corrections.
They may number 1,900: About 25 percent of Utah prisoners are sex offenders – among the highest percentage of any state. Most will be released. State law requires sex offenders to update their information annually and within 10 days of every move. Many don’t. There’s no way of knowing how many fail to register. Darren Swain, an agent for the Utah Division of Adult Probation and Parole, estimates that two to three out of 10 sex offenders’ addresses are wrong. That means 1,280 to 1,920 – out of Utah’s total sex offender population of about 6,400 – are out of compliance. Still more slip into Utah unannounced. Some sneak in from California, where in 2003 state officials acknowledged they had lost track of some 28,000 sex offenders.