By Alan Mauldin
MOULTRIE — A local sex offender registry of the more than 100 county residents meeting the criteria is set to go online later this year.
The registry, which gives the name, age, description, address, and other information, already is available on state and federal Web sites, but legal requirements have been put in place requiring counties to maintain their own sites.
Georgia law also requires sheriff’s offices to maintain a list of sexual offenders, and to have them available at county administrative buildings, municipal administrative buildings, clerk of superior court offices in addition to online.
In Colquitt County there are about 107 people who are required to register as sexual offenders, said Deputy Jennifer Gay, who works in complying with state law and verifying the addresses of offenders.
Of those, three -- one of whom is incarcerated -- are considered sexual predators, Gay said. The two who are not in jail are required to wear global positioning satellite ankle monitors, and because they are on probation are monitored by the parole office.
Sexual predators are those who have been designated by the state as a sexually violent predator or who have been determined to be a risk of committing future dangerous sexual offenses.
“They are classified as those most likely to re-offend,” Gay said.
She said that the number of people who fall under registry requirements has been remaining fairly constant.
The county’s sex offender registry page is under construction.
When it is in operation residents can check the site at Colquitt County Commission site, located at ccboc.com.
“I’m hoping to have it completed in the next couple of months,” Gay said. “It’s federal law (that) every sheriff’s office shall have their own Web site and maintain it. We can no longer piggy back off the GBI Web site.”
The GBI currently has a sex offender registry at http://services.georgia.gov/gbi/gbisor/SORSearch.jsp that allows users to get information by city or zip code.
One advantage of the county site is that information can be updated immediately, Gay said. It takes about 24 hours for the GBI to update information after it is sent by the county.
Georgia law requires sex offenders to register with the sheriff’s office in the county in which they will be living within 72 hours of release from prison or parole. They also are required to register each year within 72 hours of their birthdays, or when moving within the county or to another jurisdiction.
Predators are required to register every six months.
In addition to working in compliance, Gay does an address check once a year for each person being monitored by the county. The state Board of Pardons and Paroles is responsible for those who are on probation or parole.
“I go to the last reported address to make sure they still live there,” Gay said. “If they’re not there I take (arrest) warrants.
Identified sexual offenders also are required to register vehicles, mobile home decals, phone numbers and notify the sheriff’s office of any changes to any of those items, Gay said.
“The law mainly requires for us to have their address, for us to know where they live, know what they drive, what they look like,” Gay said. “It’s not our job to maintain them 24 hours a day.
“The sheriff’s office is responsible for registering them every year, making sure they’re living where they say they’re living, they’re working where they say they’re working. That’s basically it.”
By Alan Mauldin