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Use of sex offender list increases

Janine Marnien

LA CRESCENTA -- Interest in accessing a list of registered sex

offenders has tripled since a News-Press article revealed that 14

convicted sex offenders were living in the foothills area, Crescenta

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Valley Sheriff’s officials said.

Officials are pleased with the jump, adding that some residents were

unaware they could look at such a list, Deputy Dan Connolly said.

“It’s their responsibility as a parent to see what’s going on in the

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community,” he said.

The information is made available under Megan’s Law, named for Megan

Kanka of New Jersey. The girl was raped and murdered by a neighbor -- a

twice-convicted sex offender -- in 1994.

“What happened to Megan happened because there was no protection at

that time,” Connolly said. “Now we have it.”

The law requires that names and locations of registered sex offenders

be provided to the public by law enforcement agencies. The federal law

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passed in 1996, with individual state versions following. The amount of

specific information available to the public varies from state to state.

In California, the public has access to the names, convictions and

city that offenders live in. Pictures also are sometimes available.

Connolly said some people who have come in to look at the list at the

Crescenta Valley Sheriff’s Station have recognized some of the offenders.

Crescenta Valley Town Council member Sharon Raghavachary was one of

the people who used the computer after learning that 12 registered sex

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offenders live in La Crescenta and two in La Canada Flintridge.

“It didn’t surprise me at all,” she said. “They’re going to be

everywhere. Nowhere is perfectly safe.”

She added that everybody should look at the list because they might

recognize someone.

Adults 18 or older with a valid picture ID can use the computer. No

appointment is needed. For more information, call the station at

248-3464.


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