MIAMI - You can now search the Florida Department of Law Enforcement's Sex Offender Registry for offenders working, living, or going to school at college and universities.
The Florida Legislature allocated $18,000 to update FDLE's computer program following a Local 10 investigation into how difficult it was to find sex offenders on college campuses and universities.
"To enhance public safety and in the spirit of cooperation, the Florida Legislature, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, and Florida Sheriffs have created greater public awareness of sexual predators on our post-secondary campuses," said Sen. Eleanor Sobel, who sponsored the legislation. "Sex offenders in our system of higher education are a harsh reality. Helping to provide Florida's students the most efficient tools to identify and inform themselves about potential threats in their lives was a logical next step for me."
"It's important that each of us remains aware of our surroundings," said FDLE Commissioner Gerald Bailey. "With that in mind, the sex predator/offender campus-search function is a valuable source of public safety information."
Florida's registration law requires sex offenders and predators to report higher education enrollment, employment, or vocational activities to local sheriffs' offices. Florida Sheriffs' Offices provide this information to the institution or university and to FDLE for inclusion in the public online registry.
State records show more than 600 sex offenders have active registration information at colleges and universities as of Oct. 9.
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