Four elderly sex offenders who live at the state mental health institute in Clarinda, Iowa, have been taken off the state’s public sex-offender registry, raising fears that state officials will quietly transfer the offenders to private nursing homes should the facility be closed, reports the Des Moines Register. Opponents of the planned hospital closure have been buzzing about the four offenders’ rumored removal from online registry. State officials confirmed the deletions Monday, but said the action was unrelated to the possible closure of the mental hospital.
Karin Hamilton, a Department of Public Safety administrator who oversees the registry, said her department has removed about 100 sex offenders’ names from the public website in the past two months or so. The deletions were due to legal questions over who should be placed on the registry, she said. The deleted names included the four sex offenders who are committed to a locked unit at the Clarinda mental hospital, she said. The review determined that “incarcerated” offenders need not be listed, she said.