Check for tricks before you treat: Keeping families safe from sex offenders

Local News

DOTHAN, Ala. (WDHN) — With Halloween close by parents want to make sure their kids are going to be safe, which means knowing which neighborhoods to go to and which to stay away from.

Now, that will be easier than ever.

The phone application Offender Watch can now connect you with your children and tell you if sexual offenders live in a neighborhood you or your kids are in.

“Pretty much just make sure you plan ahead,” State Trooper Kendra McKinney said. “Be aware of the routes that your children will be taking when they do go trick-or-treating.

“Offender Watch that not only manages but keeps up with offenders in the area. You can also visit that website to see any possible offenders that will be in the area where your kids plan on trick-or-treating.”

With children living in today’s world, this application allows parents to link their children’s accounts to their own. If they go off to another area, parents can check to see if any offenders are in the same area.

Many parents are behind the idea of knowing where offenders live to protect their kids.

“I also think that it kind of gives you a perspective that there are these types of people in the community, and we do need to be aware of it,” said Robin McDaniels, a mother of two in Dothan. “Even though we are really, you know, everybody knows everybody and we look out for everybody. There are still those people we need to be aware of and alert about.”

Offender Watch also includes a page to call 911 if you or your family member needs immediate help.

Also remember that many houses may not take part in Halloween due to the COVID-19 pandemic and to be careful in that aspect as well.

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