Uncovering the Troubling Gap in Tri-State Laws: How Sex Offenders Slip Through the Cracks Near Schools

CINCINNATI, Ohio – Laws regarding sex offenders living near schools in the Tri-State area are failing to provide adequate protection, according to local law enforcement. This issue came to light after a concerned viewer emailed Local 12 news station, prompting an investigation into the matter.

It was discovered that registered sex offenders are residing in close proximity to schools, raising serious concerns for the safety of students. For instance, one man named Daniel lives just a few hundred feet away from Holmes Middle and High School in Covington. While his sex offender registry page indicates a conviction for raping a 14-year-old girl, Daniel argues that the encounter was consensual and that the victim lied about her age.

Legally speaking, Daniel is not breaking any laws because his offense predates the 2006 legislation that prohibits sex offenders from living within 1,000 feet of a school. This same issue exists north of the river, where another offender listed their address as an apartment building in Walnut Hills, located directly across the street from an elementary school.

The shortcomings in the current laws are further highlighted by the fact that even some offenders who committed crimes after the implementation of these restrictions are also living near schools without penalty. This raises questions about the effectiveness of the state’s screening and notification systems. School officials, such as Mt. Auburn Preparatory Academy principal Craig Horn, expressed surprise at the lack of information regarding sex offenders in close proximity to their schools.

Currently, in Ohio, violating the 1,000-foot law is only considered a civil infraction, and law enforcement will only take action if a landlord or local municipality obtains a court order for the offender to leave their residence. Similarly, in Kentucky, it is only considered a criminal offense to break the 1,000-foot law if a citizen or school files a complaint.

These findings highlight the need for stronger legislation and enforcement to ensure the safety of students in the vicinity of sex offenders. Efforts are underway to contact state lawmakers to address this issue and potentially make breaking the 1,000-foot law a criminal offense.

In conclusion, there are registered sex offenders residing near schools in the Tri-State area, and current laws provide limited protections. Offenders who committed their crimes prior to certain legislation or are not in violation due to technicalities pose a potential risk to students. There is a need for stricter laws and improved screening systems to enhance the safety of students and address this critical public concern.