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Cole Co. deputies to check on sex offenders Halloween night

While Mid-Missouri children go door-to-door Friday night looking for candy, the Cole County Sheriff’s Department will be knocking on doors, too, those of sex offenders.

The 27 registered sex offenders in the county are required to stay home and deputies put the Halloween check in place about 5 years ago to make sure that was happening.

Captain John Wheeler with the Cole County Sheriff’s Department said deputies will have a meeting to go over which sex offenders have to comply with the Halloween check.

Wheeler said sex offenders who have committed a sex crime against a minor will have to have their lights out, a sign on the door saying “no candy here”, and stay inside from 5:00 to 10:30 Friday night.

“Know where your kids are at because there are some people out there that are sex offenders and we have them registered, but there are a lot of predators,” said Wheeler.

Wheeler said the number one thing in preventing something bad happening to your kids is simple, know where your kids are.

Out of the 125 sex offenders in Cole county, 27 of them fit the bill for the Halloween check.

Wheeler said, “not only will we have our deputies out searching, we’ll have extra people on tonight.”

Wheeler said there are a few things parents can do to avoid coming in contact with a sex offender.

The Sheriff’s Department and Highway Patrol have an updated list of sex offenders and their location.

Cell phone apps like “sex offender search” give you the offender’s mug shot, the crime committed, and their location.

You should also have a plan in place for your kids if they are going trick-or-treating without you.

A few tips include communicating with your kids before and while they are out, make sure there is a trust adult around and make sure there is a safe house in case of emergency.

Wheeler re-emphasized the importance of communicating with your kids on Halloween night. He said about nine times out of ten talking to your kids while they are out will prevent something bad from happening to them.

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