Pa. lawmaker wants state control of where sex offenders can live
Updated On: Jan 18 2013 04:18:09 PM CST
Many municipalities in Pennsylvania tried to pass their own ordinances to control where sex offenders can live, but it was knocked down by the courts.
Pa. Sen. Lisa Boscola said that's why she's taking the matter to the state level.
Pennsylvania State Police list more than 12,000 sex offenders who live in the commonwealth near playgrounds, schools and bus stops.
"There is no law in Pennsylvania that said we can restrict individuals that have been convicted of an offense toward a minor," explained Boscola, D-Lehigh, Monroe & Northampton counties.
So she took the matter into her own hands. Senate Bill 86 is her answer. If passed, it would prohibit convicted sex offenders from living within 1,000 feet of a school, day care, preschool, playground or recreation center.
"And then I want to carry it one step further and say and bus stops, because these are where children congregate and this is where I've been hearing complaints," said Boscola.
The proposed legislation would set up a protective barrier of 500 feet around any bus stop, making Pennsylvania the first state to do that.
"Twenty-one other states have some form of residency requirement," said Boscola.
The bill is not retroactive and does allow exemptions if a school district can't relocate a bus stop. In that instance, the district must notify police and parents that a predator is present.
Boscola introduced a similar bill last session, and said she thinks it can pass this time around.
"I think we can save lives and save children from sexual offenses if something like this is passed," said Boscola.
New Jersey is another state that currently has no laws on sex offender residency limitations.
Copyright 2013 WFMZ. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Morganelli: Police-involved shooting investigation could take weeks
Police: Man provides false information about Eric Frein
Returning soldier surprises family
Police ask for help find thieves stealing tires, rims
Police: Stolen vehicle not used by Frein
Woman pleads guilty in animal cruelty case
Foul language may stop plans to rename ASD field for Andre Reed
Grandfather: Marysville school shooter hit cousins
Pair jailed in theft of money from Rita's Water Ice in Reading
Local judge dies