WCSO conducts 50 sex offender compliance checks ahead of Halloween
WILLIAMSON COUNTY, Texas - Aside from treats and costumes, Halloween is a time for children to get to know their neighbors. The Williamson County Sheriff's Office wants parents to know what doors their children should not be knocking on.
Sheriff Robert Chody advises parents to check the state’s sex offender registry.
On Wednesday, WCSO with the assistance of the U.S Marshals conducted a compliance check on 50 sex offenders in the area. Chody said nine needed further investigation.
"If we don't make contact then we leave a sticker on their door or their window and they have 48 hours to notify us,” Chody said. "The reason we do these checks is if we have an event occur at a school or a location in our jurisdiction that is related to something a sex offender can do then it gives us a start to know where our offenders are most likely are at."
Chody said sex offender compliance checks have been a priority for his office since he ran for sheriff. Prior to his arrival Chody said the department performed one a year at minimum. In 2017, his deputies performed three, two in 2018, and two this year. The state does not require agencies to perform a certain amount of compliance checks.
Each offender has a different risk level with different requirements. Chody said during the compliance check process he learned restrictions are different for unincorporated areas as well. He said sex offenders with a victim under the age of 17 can live near schools but he hopes to change that.
"That's only because we are lacking in ordinance, so we are now going to be speaking with the county attorney and determining if we can do the same things that the municipalities are doing where they can enforce and prevent offenders from living close to school zones," said Chody.
For public access to the state sex offender registry, click here.