Georgia Sheriff Puts Up 'No Trick-Or-Treat' Signs Outside Homes of Sex Offenders
A Georgia sheriff has put up signs in the yards of registered sex offenders over the Halloween period, warning children and their parents not to go trick or treating at the addresses.
Butts County Sheriff Gary Long told deputies to put up the “no trick or treat at this address” signs on his patch after interpreting state law as meaning it is his duty to explicitly alert the public to where local sex offenders are.
“Georgia law is very, very clear,” Long told 11Alive.
“It doesn't say that the sheriff can or the sheriff may, it says the sheriff shall. And it says that the sheriff shall in fact notify each community of the presence of sex offenders.”
Long said that “for years and years” the “big challenge” area deputies faced was thousands of children congregating in a central square for an event on Halloween.
But as that is not happening this year, he has put up the signs because he is concerned that those children will now go knocking door to door instead to trick or treat their neighbors.
In Butts County there are over 50 registered sex offenders, 9News reported, of around 31,500 across the whole state of Georgia.
“There are some sex offenders that are not happy," Long told 9News.
"But I’m not in the business of making them happy. I’m in the business of keeping safe communities and making sure that our children are protected."