Neighbor Failed to Register as Sex Offender
Question: During the ten-day inspection period provided in the purchase contract for our North Central Phoenix home, we had the right to perform inspections and investigations. We have two young children, so we investigated the public registry for convicted sex offenders. No convicted sex offenders were shown on the public registry as being anywhere near our home. We closed escrow on our home eight months ago. Last week we were shocked when the police arrested our next door neighbor’s son who had been living there for more than two years.
An email from our homeowners association said that our next door neighbor’s son had been convicted for selling child pornography five years ago, and that he had failed to register his new address on the public registry for convicted sex offenders. We would never have bought our home had we known that a convicted sex offender lived next door. What good is a public registry for convicted sex offenders if the public registry did not show that a convicted sex offender was living next door?
Answer: The public registry for convicted sex offenders lists the home addresses of convicted sex offenders. A major weakness in the public registry for convicted sex offenders occurs when the convicted sex offender moves to a new address and fails to notify the public registry.
This failure of the convicted sex offender to notify the public registry of the new address is a felony. In an attempt to lead a normal life, however, many convicted sex offenders do not notify the public registry of their new address. The recent arrest of your next door neighbor’s son was probably for failing to notify the public registry of his new address.