Halloween curfew in place for Atlanta area sex offenders

by: Richard Elliot Updated:

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ATLANTA, Ga. —

Georgia Pardons and Parole officers spent Tuesday visiting convicted sex offenders to remind them to stay away from children on Halloween Thursday night.

"It's all about creating the safest possible environment for the children and their parents during Halloween," said Georgia Board of Pardons and Parole Spokesman Steve Hayes. "We want to remove the possibility of any unsafe situation."

Hayes said they oversee about 170 convicted sex offenders in the Metro Atlanta area. All of them received letters or got visits reminding them of the rules governing their activities on Halloween night. Channel 2 Action News got to go along on several of these compliance checks conducted by Pardons and Parole officers through parts of South Fulton and Clayton counties.

"The sex offenders, they respond in a positive manner," said Specialized Officer Taneshia Sims. "They are aware of what's required of them, and they understand it is part of their conditions of parole."

Convicted sex offenders are not allowed to have any contact with children. They are ordered to keep their porch lights off and cannot put any Halloween decorations on their homes. They are also prohibited from passing out candy and are reminded of the 5 p.m. to 8 a.m. curfew in place. Those who work at night may have that curfew modified.

"Public safety is our first priority," said Specialized Officer Gerald Pearson.

Most sex offenders will be allowed to remain in their homes, but some will be required to spend Halloween night inside a Pardons and Parole regional office.

"Protecting kids, that's the most important thing," said Sims.