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With the enactment of California's Megan's Law in , residents gained access to valuable information to help protect themselves and their loved ones from the threat of registered sex offenders. Information on more than 63, registered sex offenders including the full addresses of more than 33, offenders. The address information, which was not previously available to the public, is graphically displayed on maps in relation to the user's neighborhood, other addresses, parks, and schools. The public is able to search names, addresses, cities, zip codes, counties, parks and schools. Information on specified persons who are required to register as sex offenders under Penal Code PC Section is displayed. Sex offenders who have been granted a legal exclusion or have been convicted of an offense not requiring public disclosure see PC Section Based on the search conducted, either an offender listing or offender profile will be shown.
But the disclosure thicket is getting even thicker. Starting July 1, all California home sellers will be required to notify buyers about a database that lists convicted sex offenders living in the area. But although the public can view the names of registered offenders within any ZIP Code in the state, they cannot learn addresses of registered offenders. Even some Realtors acknowledge that the new disclosure is designed primarily to shield them from lawsuits. Do Realtors need to check the database themselves?
The ministry initially refused to release the information under an access-to-information request. Over the course of several years, it tried and failed at all possible levels of appeal. There was no public safety issue here. One Woodbridge postal area, for example, has more than 55, residents and 20 sex offenders. In the United States, sex offenders identified by address have sometimes been subject to violent attacks.