Friday, August 23, 2013

WA - Kent tells 10 group homes: Move out sex offenders or face fines

Sex offender housing
Original Article (Video Available)

Since when did having a roof over your head become illegal? And do they think because more than one ex-sex offender lives there that they are planning some mass molestation of children or something? Come on!


By Hana Kim

KENT - It’s an ultimatum that could put 70 sex offenders back on the streets. The city of Kent is threatening to shut down 10 group homes that are breaking city code.

But most of the sex offenders are not budging, saying they have no where else to live. Each group homes faces a $500 fine per day starting in September and Kent’s mayor says the city will fight it out in court if they have to.

It’s the 6th largest city in Washington and in Kent more than 300 sex offenders now live in the city.

These guys need a place to stay,” said group home manager Eddie Weber.

Weber manages six of the 10 homes the city is trying to shut down. His properties have been operating for years as clean and sober homes. Once the city realized multiple sex offenders were living together, the eviction notices went out in May.

Mayor Suzette Cooke
Suzette Cooke
The existence of group homes housing sex offenders is illegal,” said Kent Mayor Suzette Cooke.

The Department of Corrections knows they are here, everyone who came here had to be approved to be here so we are trying to follow the rules,” said Weber.

Weber says he oversees 50 sex offenders who have nowhere to go but the streets, including many level 3 sex offenders who say a stable home keeps them in line.

I would say so yes because here I have structure,” said one sex offender.

Everybody has availability of apartments or other living situations where they could go to,” said Cooke.

The idea that it’s easy for these people to find housing is ludicrous,” said Weber.

Some residents can empathize but says it’s still scary to know that as many as 10 sex offenders are living under one roof in some cases.

I have two little kids so it’s a concern,” said Kent resident Felicia Tanner.

It’s so much of a concern that Tanner often uses an app on her cell phone often to track sex offenders.

But at least one neighbor is defending the group homes saying the city should leave them alone as long as the sex offenders are behaving. “If neighbors are comfortable with it why would anybody else care about it.”

The city of Kent not only cares but is now threatening legal action.

Five hundred dollars a day or going to King County Superior court taking them to court on it,” said Cooke.

Weber says he is not budging.

For now until I don’t have any ground to stand on,” said Weber.

Weber also says that because many of his sex offenders are going through rehab they have a legal right to stay in his program.

His next step is to try to get the feds involved. Until then he will face $3000 a day starting in September because he says the sex offenders will be more dangerous if they are forced into the streets.

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Loneranger said...

Another politician up for election? As she compounds problems and the risk increases. One would think she might find another avenue to get votes. Or maybe she just has a thing for sex offenders. After a point one has to figure out where the middle ground should be. Lately they want to run treatment facilities out of town or off the planet if they could and this place wants to up root where they live. Both are on the west coast and I have a feeling it will only get worse as election time comes around. One would think if the things they do really have a positive impact it would be all over the papers. However you never ever hear anything positive or productive. Only oh the horror and what if and well it goes on and on as it is just to easy to stir up a problem when none exists. However it does get her in the paper and on the news. Cheap campaigning because she looks like she really cares. fact is she probably could give a crap less but it works for her. It would be great if they could track these moves and then when one re offends see if maybe these laws had a negative effect. We can't be to careful and if we are doing something to make this worse we need to correct the situation and get rid of the dumb bunny politician that out of ignorance sold the program with a promise they were saving the children. When sex offender programs render no reduction in crimes we are barking up the wrong tree. The fact is they will prosecute persecute and track someone after the fact and do nothing to prevent it in the first place. So even though 95 percent will never re offend and this number was the same before all these laws. You're still going to have the same number of new first time offenders each year. this is only due to the number they can prosecute during the year. so is any of this working? No new victims? Looks like they are spending all the resources they can muster but still they have the same number each year? Kind of like when all the houses in a neighborhood need painting so you paint the same house over and over again and use up as much paint as you can but still the neighborhood needs painting. One would think they are going about it the wrong way.

dlc said...

What is wrong with the city of Kent? A politician got a future to enhance, the cities coffers low on cash or what? They have served their time and getting rehab. Leave them alone. It is more likely that the people watching out for the sex offenders near their children hav something to hide!