Increasing number of paroled sex offenders on the run in California
More offenders are cutting GPS ankle bracelets and running from the law since Gov. Brown's prison realignment
The internet makes it easy to find out if there could be sex offenders living in your neighborhood with websites like familywatchdog.com and www.meganslaw.ca.gov.
Unless of course they are not registered or tracked.
Ever since Governor Jerry Brown's realignment law took effect 17 months ago, more offenders are cutting their GPS linked ankle bracelets and running.
James Sundahl has been following the story. He tells us, "It's a budget thing you know so there's just so many prisons that could hold them, or jails or whatever."
The realignment law sends lower-level offenders to county jails instead of state prisons.
Before the law took effect in 2011, those who tampered with required tracking devices could have been returned to state prison for up to a year.
Now they can be sentenced up to six months in county jails, but many are released within days because local jails are overcrowded.
This puts more civilians and especially children at risk.
Rosemary Marta is a marriage and family therapist and the clinical director at the Barbara Sinatra Children's Center. She says, "Of course there's going to be a fallout, a natural fallout from this in that more offenders are going to be released which means that more children are at risk. Especially if the offenders are unaccounted for, then everybody loses. The children lose, society loses, and then our work...basically we get more referrals from kind of higher risk kids."
In the last 15 months, Riverside and San Bernardino counties have seen more than 60 additional parolees go on the lamb.
The problem has prompted Senate Bill 57, which would make disabling the tracking device a felony and send parolees back to state prison for up to three years.
If passed by two-thirds of lawmakers and signed by Brown, the bill would take effect immediately.
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