Police remind parents to check sex offender registry before Halloween

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SHERMAN, TX -- Halloween is a time for fun and scares, but for parents it can truly be scary. Police say it's important you know where your child is trick or treating, and just whose doors they'll be knocking on.

There are more than 70 registered sex offenders in Sherman's city limits alone.

Each offender's requirements differ depending on the severity of their crime, but police say either way, none of them should be participating in Halloween events involving children.

With Halloween just days away, kids and parents are picking out their costumes and making plans.

"I wanted to be something scary," Aidan Swift said.

"What do you love about Halloween?"
"Getting a lot of candy," Lyndsay Henderson said.

"Candy! Candy, yes exactly!" Ashton and Aidan Swift said.

Halloween is a time to have fun, but Sherman Police Sergeant D.M. Hampton reminds parents safety should be at the forefront.

"It is like everything else, they need to make an informed decision about what their children are doing and where they're doing it at," Hampton said.

Along with the traditional safety precautions: fastening reflective tape to your child's costume, making sure they carry a flashlight and trick or treat in a group with an adult, you should know where they are going.

These are just a few of the registered sex offenders living in Sherman. Hampton says even if a child were to go to one of these addresses, the sex offender should not open the door.

"It would not be very wise of them, with the status that they have, to do that," Hampton said.

Hampton says Sherman police check up on offenders weekly, but he encourages parents to get familiar with their neighborhoods and check sex offender websites.

Residents who live in Texas can visit the Texas DPS website to find out where offenders live. Oklahomans can check in with the Department of Corrections.

"It has a picture of them. If you click on the name you can see what the offense was, and the sex and the age of the victim," Hampton said.

But some sex offenders do fail to register.

"We file on them for failure to comply with sex offender registry, which is a felony, and they go to jail," Hampton said.

Hampton says while he can't recall any crime involving a sex offender on Halloween in Sherman, it is always important to be vigilant and contact police if you suspect anything out of the ordinary.

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