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The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation has announced an expansion of its statewide “Operation Boo” program, aimed at creating a safer Halloween environment for children.

Now in its 17th year, Boo tightens restrictions on registered sex offenders every October 31. Registrants are subject to a 5 p.m. to 5 a.m. curfew, where they must remain indoors with all exterior house lights extinguished. No decorations are allowed to be placed in the yard of an offender, and no candy is allowed to be distributed.

Convicts are ordered to only open the front door to respond to parole agents doing house checks, which will be ramped up to ensure curfew compliance. Homeless offenders are being ordered to report to “Transient Sex-offender Curfew Centers” for monitoring during the 12 hour curfew.

New this year is a parents’ guide http://www.cdcr.ca.gov/Parole/_pdf/Operation-Boo-Parents-Guide.pdf advising on safety precautions families can take to ensure an enjoyable night of sugar solicitation.

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Comments

LawReform Oct. 27, 2011 @ 12:08 p.m.

Really what should be advised here is either don't open your door for anyone AT ALL Law enforcement included, if they don't have a warrant then they don't need to be acknowledged or leave your light on for safety so you can see who is on your doorstep before you open the door. And if someone is screaming for help by all means open your door. You don't want to be the last one that heard someone's call for help and didn't do anything.

But this is a blatant violation of a person's constitutional rights. You remember, that document that was written and blood shed for over 200 years ago... I know it is a pesky thing, giving you all that freedom, but it is real and still in effect.

Remember: "They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety." - Benjamin Franklin (if you don't know who that is, go back to GRADE SCHOOL!)

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Whisperingwind Oct. 27, 2011 @ 12:37 p.m.

This is the media and the state hyping this up to make an extra buck. Our police officers have better things to do than to play babysitter. Please educate yourselves on the real facts and not the media hype.

It’s much more likely that your child could be struck by a car Halloween night or fall victim to tooth decay from eating all their loot. http://dianedimond.net/the-halloween-sex-offender-myth/

According to the US Department of Justice, recidivism rates vary with the definition of recidivism, but remain low. In a 3 year study tracking 9,961 released sex offenders: • 5.3% were rearrested for a new sex crime. • 3.5% were reconvicted for a new sex crime. • 2.2% were rearrested for a sex crime against a child. • 3.3% of child molesters were rearrested for a new sex crime against a child http://www.sofarproject.com/facts-and-info/recidivism

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yellowroselady Oct. 28, 2011 @ 10:42 a.m.

Please don't participate in this media and law enforcement hype. Have you ever heard of or read about a sex offender attacking a child on Halloween? Me neither! Supervise (parent) your kids and teach them how to be safe. Go to Klass Kids or educational sites for help with that.

There are over 780,000 registered men, women and children across the nation required to register. The "crimes" range from urinating in public, sexting, exposure, false accusations by a soon-to-be ex-wife, angry girlfriend, or spiteful student, to looking at abusive or suggestive images of anyone from an infant to 18 years old, solicitation, Romeo and Juliet consensual sexual dating relationships, rape and incest. Credible studies advise that 95% of sexual offenses come from within the family unit, friend or someone know to the family and NEVER get reported. The registry is a way to make parents "feel good!" Now if you multiply that 780,000 by 3 or 4 family members of the registrant there are over 2,000,000 folks suffering the collateral damage caused by these registries. Families are harassed, beaten, threatened, forced to leave their church, lose jobs, lose friends and family. How is the family supposed to survive and become functional again under these conditions? Women Against Registry dot com

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ShellyStow Oct. 28, 2011 @ 1:21 p.m.

As a taxpayer, this sort of thing infuriates me. These are the facts, verified by dozens of studies and accessible to anyone who bothers to look: 1. there is zero increased risk for sexual abuse to children on Halloween. 2. the risk of abuse to children anytime does not come from registered offenders but by those they know. 3. the recidivism rate for sex offenders in general is extremely low. 4. there is not a single case on record of an assault on a child on Halloween by a registered offender. 5. offenders would not be homeless if residency restrictions didn't force them out of society. If law enforcement and politicians truly want to protect children on Halloween rather than using it as an opportunity to look like they are doing something noble, they should increase traffic control procedures because the only ill that children are at increased risk for on Halloween is falling victim to auto/pedestrian accidents--and possible tummy aches and tooth decay.

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Claire53 Oct. 28, 2011 @ 4:44 p.m.

I do not know if I have seen a more irresponsible piece of journalism in my life. Mr. Rice, you need to check your facts instead of fear mongering. Fact: There has never been one documented case of a sex offender committing a crime on Halloween. Fact: There has never been one documented case of tainted candy or tainted homemade treats. Fact: Just because someone is labeled with the term sex offender does not mean their crime involved a child.

You know, I am from Calif., but in Ohio for the university. Furthermore, I worked a great many years for the Los Angeles Reader in their advertising department. With both of these connections to your publication, I am well beyond disappointed that this article, which is nothing but an advertisement for fear and a kind of social apartheid, should offer readers this story without presenting fuller, more comprehensive, not to mention truthful copy.

If you want a dose of the opposite, please read this site: http://freerangekids.wordpress.com/2011/10/29/occupy-halloween-hand-out-homemade-treats-this-year/

and this: http://www.tampabay.com/features/parenting/poisoned-candy-turns-out-to-be-a-halloween-myth/1047841

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