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Courts and Crime

Ohio sets up a reverse directory for sex offenders
The tools helps parents track contacts made on line.

Andy Chow
Attorney General Mike DeWine says the new effort allows parents track on-line contacts by sex offenders.
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The state is trying to keep up with the ever-changing world of online predators. As Statehouse correspondent Andy Chow reports, the latest effort includes a new feature in Ohio’s sex offender search tool.

LISTEN: Chow on sex-offender searches

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If someone gets a suspicious call or questions a fishy email, they can now enter that information into a state search engine to find out if the person on the other end is a registered sex offender. 

This reverse search is a new tool featured on the online database -- accessible through the Attorney General’s web site. 

Brant Cook with the AG’s Bureau of Criminal Investigation says it can be very helpful for parents who are worried about their children’s online activity, especially since the revamp includes a search function for social media user names and gamer tags. 

“Gamer tags are critical. There can also be — with many games — a social networking aspect where gamers are talking back and forth. So that comes back directly to ‘know who your child’s friends are.’” 

Ohio is joining seven other states in using this kind of technology with its sex offender search tool. 


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