Leave it to a blogger to do the job of the press, who reportedly have been provided but have chosen not to report the following information.
Brevard County Sheriff Jack Parker--currently seeking re-election--has made a new online tool available for citizens seeking information about sex offenders living in the neighborhood.
The BCSO website describes OffenderWatch as "the nation's leading sex offender management and community notification tool... (which) provides the most accurate and timely information...".
I guess it's all in how one defines accurate.
A comparison of the corporately owned OffenderWatch and the Florida Sex Offender Registry revealed misrepresentations of public records by OffenderWatch, specifically regarding the legal description of criminal convictions.
In several randomly selected offenders, the nature of the conviction is documented incorrectly by OffenderWatch, particularly so for lewd or lascivious solicitation convictions, i.e. online sting operations with no travel, no physical contact.
Examples of such:
Lewd or lascivious battery victim 12-15 years old; F.S. 800.04(4) (SOLICIT IN CRIMINAL ACT)—as so noted by the FSOR—is misrepresented by OffenderWatch as 825-Lewd or lascivious battery
Lewd or lascivious child, U/16; F.S. 800.04(4) (SOLICIT IN CRIMINAL ACT)--as so noted by the FSOR—is misrepresented by OffenderWatch as 800.04-Lewd or lascivious child under 16.
I'm no attorney, but solicitation does not battery make.
As far as recourse to address the inaccurate record. no procedure is designated-- by the websites of the Sheriff or OffenderWatch--which would allow an offender to seek a correction of the record.
But it gets better.
As Sheriff Parker has also chosen to notify the public of sex offenders living within the Brevard County community via U.S. mail, the incorrect legal description of sex offense convictions has also been misrepresented on the community notification postcards.
My understanding is misuse or material alteration of public records information or distributing false information is a misdemeanor of the first degree in the State of Florida . (Section 775.21(10)(c), Florida Statutes).
At this time, it appears both OffenderWatch and the Brevard County Sheriff’s Office stand in violation of state law.
As the continued use of inaccurate sex offender/ sexual predator public records information can cause irreparable harm on those convicted and upon members of their families, I'm certain the Sheriff has some explanation.
Like perhaps by accurate, he might have meant close enough to make it hurt.
Or perhaps the Sheriff is just one more Republican who remains above the law.