Teen Predators - Part II

By: Lori Mitchell
By: Lori Mitchell

Schools ban violent felons from working anywhere near children. But when the felon is a child, the school opens its doors to them and hopes nothing happens.

Muhlenberg County Superintendent Dale Todd faced a similar situation a couple years ago when a sexual offender entered his school district. He knew about the boy's past, but had to keep that information confidential. "You recognize the fact that safety is the most important thing, but you still have to be careful not to violate the rights of any child in the school district."

Juvenile Criminal Privacy laws don't allow schools to warn other students or parents when a registered sex offender is mainstreamed. That means teen predators can roam around freely without anyone finding out.

"Usually we are notified by the local court system. Then we let a committee decide what is the best place for that child. However, children are very transit these days so I can see where they may slip through the cracks."

In Todd's case, the student was placed in an alternative learning center, but many school systems allow them to stay in classrooms with other children.

That's why Commonwealth Attorney Chris Cohron says he feels sex offenders names need to made public. "It is ridiculous to me that parents are not notified. You have kids 14, 15 committing very violent crimes."

If you know a victim who needs help, contact the Barren River Area Child Advocacy Center at 783-4357.

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