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Seal Beach bans sex offenders from parks and beaches By Charles M. Kelly | Tue, Feb 28 2012 04:08 PM

The Seal Beach City Council banned sex offenders from the community’s parks Monday night, Feb. 27.

 

The ordinance passed on its first reading as part of the Consent Calendar.

 

The council did not discuss the issue. The ordinance will return for a second reading before it becomes city law.

 

The Seal Beach ordinance prohibits registered sex offenders from entering public parks, going on a beach, a jetty, the Seal Beach Pier or any adjacent, city-owned parking lots.

 

Under California law, sex offenders must register with a local law enforcement agency within five days of moving into the agency’s jurisdiction, according to the staff report by Interim Police Chief Robert Luman.

 

The first conviction for a violator of the ordinance would result in a $500 fine, a maximum six months in the county jail or both.

 

A second conviction would result in a $500 fine, a minimum 10 days and a maximum six months in the county jail.

 

A third conviction would result in a fine of $500, a minimum 90 days and a maximum of six months in the county jail.

 

Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackauckas encouraged the council to pass the ordinance. The DA’s Office supported the passage of a similar ordinance by the Orange County Board of Supervisors last year, as well as several other Orange County cities.

 

“We’re trying to establish places where people don’t have to worry about their kids coming into contact with sex offenders,” Rackauckas said.

 

He said the issue first came to his attention when a sex offender who had been released from prison inherited a house near a park.

 

He also said there was no way to know which children did not get molested at a park—or later at another location after meeting a sex offender—because of the “Child Safety Zone” ordinances.

 

Sex offenders who are transients have to update their registration every 30 days, Luman wrote.

 

There are 10 registered sex offenders in Seal Beach as of January, according to the Luman report. None of them are on probation or parole, Luman wrote. “Of the 10 registered sex offenders in the city of Seal Beach, seven reside in Leisure World, one in College Park East, one on ‘The Hill’ and one while registered in the Oakwood Apartments no longer resides at this address,” Luman wrote.

 

The chief’s report said there would be no financial impact from passing the ordinance.

 

To make a comment on this story at the Sun Newspapers’ Web site, go to www.sunnews.org.

 

 

 

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David K. Slay Says:

Thu, Mar 01 2012 08:08 AM

This story belongs in the "don't bother me with the facts" category. The vast majority of children who are sexually molested are victimized by people they know and trust: family members, school personnel, church leaders, and others whose jobs gain them positions of trust with youth (and their parents). Keeping registered sex offenders away from public parks, piers, etc., may make elected officials feel good, but it does nothing to protect children from those people who are most likely to molest them. But I'm afraid the city council is not much interested in the facts of the matter.


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