FAQ About Sex Offenders

Frequently asked questions about sex offenders in Amarillo:
Question:  Is it legal for a registered sex offender to live near a school or daycare?
Answer:  In Amarillo, there is no ordinance regulating where a registered sex offender may live.  However, as a condition of Parole or Probation, a convicted sex offender may be restricted as to where he or she may reside.  This is monitored and regulated by the Probation or Parole office.  A sex offender who has been released from probation or parole is not restricted as to where they can live in Amarillo.  The offender is still required to register their address, vehicle, employment, and contact information.


Question: Are registered sex offenders allowed around children?
Answer:  Again, this depends on the status of the offender.  An offender who is not on probation or parole is not restricted from being around children.


Question:  I received a postcard notification in the mail that says a sex offender lives nearby.  What does this mean?
Answer:  The Texas Department of Public Safety sends out a notice to surrounding neighborhoods when a high-risk sex offender registers a new address.  This could be an offender who has recently moved to a new address, or who has been released from incarceration.  No action is required by you; this is simply a notice to let you know this person is living nearby.


Question:  How often does a sex offender check in with the police department?
Answer:  Depending on the offense(s) for which the person has been convicted, about 75% of all registrants must report annually to the police department.  The other 25% are reporting every 90 days.  This process requires the person to verify their information.  A person who is required to register as a sex offender must report an address change 7 days prior to moving.  Additionally, the offender must report and provide verification of the move within seven days after they have moved to a new residence.  Registered sex offenders must report other changes (job, phone number, attendance at college, etc.) as required by law.


Question:  I know a sex offender who has moved without reporting their new address.  What should I do?
Answer: To report possible sex offender violations, you can call the Detective Division of the Amarillo Police Department at (806) 378-9402 (9:00 AM to 5:00 PM).   Ask to speak to a detective with the sex offender registration program.  You may also email this information to the unit commander at Elizabeth.Brown@amarillo.gov.
A crime in progress should be reported to Police dispatch at (806) 378-3038.  (Emergencies – dial 911)


Question:  Where can I read about sex offender registration laws?
Answer:  The Texas sex offender registration laws are found in Chapter 62 of the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure.


Links to other sources of information on sex offenders and keeping children safe:
http://www.prevent-abuse-now.com/sex_off.htm

http://www.missingkids.com

http://www.amberalert.gov/

Updated 08-19-2010

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