INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) Dozens of sex offenders are being told they are in violation of the law and need to move after an I-Team 8 investigation.
Tuesday night, I-Team 8’s story showed sex offenders living near schools and day cares.
After seeing the I-Team 8 evidence showing where sex offenders live, Sheriff John Layton launched his own investigation and is taking immediate action: 41 sex offenders have been told they are in violation.
The sheriff’s list includes all six sex offenders classified by the state as a sexually violent predator or offender against children that I-Team 8 found living within 1,000 feet of schools, day cares and parks.
Deputies investigated hundreds of offenders.
“(Deputies) knocked on some doors and told them in the sheriff’s office opinion that you’re in violation,” Layton said.
The doors they knocked on included sex offenders who had a range of reactions when I-Team 8 knocked on their doors. Click here for more on those offenders from Tuesday’s story.
Layton confirms of the 41 they have told they are under investigation, “one has already moved. So we are making progress within two days, so we are happy about that and I hope the rest of them listen.”
Police and lawmakers both say the law governing certain sex offenders by the 1,000-foot rule is complicated. Initially we were told some of the names we presented to the sheriff could live that close to schools and day cares because they were convicted prior to the law going into effect in 2006. Now all are in violation.
“There’s a couple of different opinions (on the law), and all I can say in law enforcement opinion and Marion County Sheriff’s Department opinion, they are in violation if you read that law,” Layton said.
After I-Team 8 took the sex offender issue to the sheriff, he worked with the prosecutor’s office to look at a second case law. Until now, the sheriff’s department had been following 2009 state case law that determined if a sex offender was convicted before July 2006, the 1,000-foot rule wouldn’t apply. Now they are following Sewell vs. the State of Indiana, which says if the offender moves after the law went into effect in 2006, they are bound by the 1,000-foot rule.
Marion County deputies are only required to check on sex offender addresses yearly. Layton does it every 90 days.
For those now being investigated Layton confirms, “We will check on them at least every 30 days.” And Layton says he isn’t done yet.
Even more sex offenders may be hearing a knock. They are notified by a deputy in person and in writing they are in sex offender residency violation, under criminal investigation and felony charges may be coming from the prosecutor.
Layton says he will take the sex offender issue to all 92 sheriffs at the Indiana Sheriffs Association meeting this weekend.