ISP email system notifies Idahoans if sex offender lives nearby

rbartholdt@lmtribune.comJanuary 3, 2014 

A new Idaho State Police email system can notify Idaho residents online if a sex offender moves into their neighborhood, the Lewiston Tribune reports.

Teresa Baker, public information officer for the Idaho State Police in Meridian, said most people don’t regularly check the state’s sex offender registry to see who their neighbors are or if new neighbors are registered sex offenders. The new system does it for them automatically.

The service, accessed via the Idaho State Police website at isp.idaho.gov, tracks sex offenders and automatically sends an email notification to subscribers when registered sex offenders move into their neighborhoods.

Baker said the system, which was adopted by the state police less than a month ago, can either track movements of specific sex offenders or generically send notices on any sex offender new to a specific area.

The new mapping system uses Google Maps and can pinpoint registrants within one, three or five miles of an address.

Idaho’s sex offender registry began in Idaho in 1993 under the umbrella of the state Bureau of Criminal Identification. The state Legislature expanded the public’s right to access sex offender information in 1998 when it passed the Sexual Offender Registration Notification and Community Right-to-Know Act.

The latest upgrade was paid in part with federal dollars and moves Idaho closer to compliance with the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act, Baker said.

Offenders in Idaho must verify their address each quarter, she said. The federal law requires the most serious offenders, called Tier III sex offenders, to register their locations and places of work more frequently than is required by Idaho law.

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