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Orange County

Web Maps to Point to Sex Offenders' Neighborhoods

The Megan's Law information, to be posted starting Nov. 1, won't include addresses.

October 15, 2002|Jean O. Pasco | Times Staff Writer

A computerized map showing general neighborhoods in Orange County where convicted sexual offenders live will be available on the Internet beginning Nov. 1.

Orange County supervisors approved the idea in August after the kidnapping and murder of 5-year-old Samantha Runnion.

Last week, supervisors voted to begin providing the information Nov. 1 even though maps of some of the county's 34 cities might not be included.

Each city must approve the posting of locations of sexual offenders living there.

There are 2,709 registered sex offenders countywide. The locations will be shown as large circles in the vicinity of offenders' homes. A disclaimer will notify anyone viewing the map that it is illegal to harass registered sexual offenders.

Supervisor Todd Spitzer pushed to immediately post the locations of 64 offenders living in the county's unincorporated areas. But other supervisors wanted the map to be more complete before making it public. Cities are being asked to approve the inclusion of their information in the next two weeks.

The program is provided under Megan's Law, named for a 7-year-old New Jersey girl who was raped and killed by a paroled sex offender.

A database listing sex offenders is available via computers at sheriff's substations. Residents must fill out and sign an application to receive a sex offender's name, birth date, criminal record and photo -- but no address.

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