For parents whose children will be going door-to-door in search of treats on Saturday, they will have one less danger to worry about. Sex offenders who are currently on parole or probation in Newton County are required to report to the sheriff’s office during peak door-knocking hours.
The program, which is in its fourth year, is called the Halloween Shut-in at the NCSO and will be held Saturday from 6-10 p.m. It is a requirement for those sex offenders who are still on probation or parole to attend and all others who are on the sex offender registry are invited to attend as well. For those who are required and fail to show up, that will mean a violation of their parole or probation, which could easily land them back in jail.
According to investigator Charles Ammons who serves on the sex offender task force at the sheriff’s office, there will be a judge and an assistant district attorney who speak at the shut-in, as well as Sheriff Ezell Brown. Those in attendance will have the opportunity to ask questions and learn more about the recent change in sex offender laws and anything that relates directly to their charges.
"It’s a valuable situation for them," said Ammons. "They have the opportunity to actually talk to people from the judicial system and have their questions answered and things explained to them about the new laws."
Ammons said they also hold this event annually, in part, to put parents' minds at ease while their children are out enjoying Halloween.