Tuesday, October 9, 2012

AG Schmidt, KBI announce offender registry improvements

Kansas communities will be safer thanks to new improvements to the state’s criminal offender registry, Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt and the Kansas Bureau of Investigation announced today.

The new system allows citizens to sign up for notification emails advising when an offender registers a home, work or school address near an address of interest.

The new system also includes expanded search capabilities and maps showing offenders’ registered locations.

“These enhancements to the offender registry are designed to help keep our communities safe and informed,” Schmidt said. “The information in the system will be more easily accessible to the public and law enforcement community.”

Citizens can search for offender information by the offender’s name, location, reporting compliance, and offender type (sex, violent or drug).

Searches can also be done by phone number, online identity or email address to determine if the information is associated with a registered offender.

The updates were made as part of the implementation of federal registry system requirements of the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act.

The Kansas legislature adopted these requirements into state law in 2011. The improvements to the registry were funded through federal grants.

Law enforcement officials will also see improvements to the system, which makes the registry process as efficient and effective as possible.

The new system will also improve information-sharing capabilities across jurisdictions and with other states.

The offender registry can be accessed at www.kbi.ks.gov/registeredoffender.

The KBI has maintained the Kansas Offender Registration system since its inception in 1993 to provide investigative leads for law enforcement, to deter offenders from re-offending and to provide the public with current information on persons who have been proven to have been dangerous.

Over the years the system has evolved, with Kansas being one of the first states to place a registry on the Internet in 1997, and coverage has been expanded to include violent criminals and drug traffickers.