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San Benito County conducts sex offender sweep

Thirteen people found to be non-compliant with registration requirements

During a sweep of registered sex offenders last week, San Benito County authorities determined that 13 people were out of compliance with their registration requirements.

The county’s probation department conducted its annual sex offender registration compliance sweep on Oct. 26. Officers from the Hollister Police Department, San Benito County Sheriff’s Office, U.S. Marshal’s Service and California State Parole assisted in the sweep.

The purpose of the operation was to contact registered sex offenders throughout the county to ensure each one is following state requirements. Authorities contacted a total of 99 sex offenders—86 of whom were determined to be in compliance, authorities said.

Thirteen of the contacted individuals were found to be non-compliant and requiring further investigation, according to a press release from the county probation office. Of these, four are potential International Megan’s Law cases that are under review for further action by the U.S. Marshal’s Service.

In addition, three parole compliance checks were conducted during the Oct. 26 sweep, authorities said. Investigators are conducting follow-up inquiries into those found to be out of compliance.

Pursuant to state law, sex offender registrants are required to register in person with the law enforcement agency that has jurisdiction where they reside, according to authorities. The registrants must also comply with several registration requirements, such as updating their registration annually and informing law enforcement when any changes have been made to their address or registration information.

Failure by a sex registrant to keep law enforcement notified of an address change or registration information is a crime and can be punished as a felony or misdemeanor.

“The annual sex offender sweep is a collaborative effort to reduce violent sexual offenses in the county through proactive surveillance and arrest of habitual sexual offenders, and strict enforcement of state registration requirements,” says the press release.