Guest Column: Offender Watch

DAVID B. SHOARGuest Column: Offender Watch

David B. Shoar, Sheriff
St Johns County, FL

You may not realize that registered sex offenders and sexual predators move an average of four times a year, but we do. That is why your Sheriff’s Office has created an online tool to keep you better informed as to where they reside anywhere in St Johns County.

Offender Watch was created in response to inquiries from our citizens for easy access to sexual offender data so that they can run neighborhood searches around their home and school — and, the public wants to stay updated whenever there is a change near them.

We also know that about 80-90% of us, already have a sex offender living within a one-mile radius of our home, our children’s school, or our place of employment; so, we designed the system to enable anyone with an Internet connection to search, by name or address, for registered sex offenders and predators within St Johns County.

There are two components to this free public service — a geographic tool and an e-mail notification program.

With the geographic tool, any address in the county can be entered into a search engine, and a map will be displayed showing full information on the location of any registered sex offenders or predators living within a mile radius of that address.

The email notification program allows any person to enter up to five addresses in the county into a database so that the Sheriff’s Office can notify you of any offenders or predators who moves within one mile of that given address.

To sign up for the Offender Watch program, go to our website at www.sjso.org, and click on the Sex Offender and Predator tab and then the Offender Watch link.

On-screen instructions will guide you through the process.

There is a wealth of additional safety information on our website, on this and many other topics. Visit us at www.sjso.org, follow us on facebook as well as Twitter to stay up-to-date with breaking news of interest to the community. If you have any questions or concerns, you may e-mail them to me at dshoar@sjso.org.

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