CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – As Halloween approaches, it is important to keep in mind how many sex offenders are in your area before heading out to trick-or-treat.
Vincenzo Caracciolo of Springfield says parents should always keep an eye on their children while also giving them some space to have fun with their friends, “Give them space, give them distance to have fun with their friends but keep them in sight. Other things, you know, well lit areas, well lit streets, where there is a lot of foot traffic, you know. I think that is very important, bigger groups.”
Mila Durand from Springfield told 22News it’s important for children to have a parent with them on Halloween, “It’s dark out, you have to stay with an adult in case you get lost.”
Safety officials also recommend that the little ones go trick or treating early. If older children are going out without an adult, parents should know what neighborhoods they will be in and make sure their child knows not to accept rides from strangers or go inside a stranger’s home.
According to Mass.gov, there are three levels of sex offenders in Massachusetts, and are classified based on their risk of re-offending and the degree of danger that they pose to the public.
A sex offender is anyone who lives, works, or attends school in Massachusetts who has:
- Been convicted of a sex offense
- Been adjudicated as a youthful offender or as a delinquent juvenile for a sex offense
- Been released from incarceration, parole, probation supervision, or custody with the Department of Youth Services for a sex offense conviction or adjudication
- Been adjudicated as a sexually dangerous person, or a person released from civil commitment anytime from August 1, 1981
Level one sex offenders have a low risk of re-offending and pose a low degree of danger to the public.
Level two sex offenders have a moderate risk of re-offending and pose a moderate degree of danger to the public. The public can only access level two offender data on the internet for sex offenders classified after July 12, 2013.
Level three sex offenders have a high risk of re-offending and pose a high degree of danger to the public. Information about them is publicly available.
All 50 states require anyone who is convicted of certain sex crimes to register. Laws are different by state but all are required to register within a certain time period after they are released from custody. If you fail to register as a sex offender, it is a federal crime. Federal crimes are offenses that violate U.S. federal laws and are subjected to penalties, probation, community service, or related programs, and imprisonment is often more severe than those imposed by state and local courts.
Sex offenders are everywhere across western Massachusetts, but could you be around any that you are unaware of?
Here is a list of the total number of sex offenders in each local county:
- Hampden County: 675
- Hampshire County: 127
- Franklin County: 124
- Berkshire County: 190
In Chicopee, there are 70 registered sex offenders. To find out if there are sex offenders in your area, visit the Sex Offender Registry Board. From the database, you can search by county, city, and up to three miles from a specific address.
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