OREGON COUNTY -- As of June 2005 there are 34 sex offenders registered in Oregon County.
Deputy Tom Lamb has been in charge of the program at the Oregon County Sheriff's Office since the death of Chief Deputy Nathan Murphy in 2001.
In Missouri, as of Aug. 28, 2004, those who, since July 1, 1979, have been convicted of, found guilty of, or pleaded guilty or no contest to committing or attempting to commit a felony sex offense have to register as sex offenders. Lamb said there are many more reasons a person might have to register, including convictions for kidnapping, sexual exploitation and furnishing pornographic materials to minors.
"In Missouri within 10 days of conviction, release from incarceration, or placement on probation, a person has to register with the chief law enforcement official, in our case Sheriff Ward, in the county where the person resides, unless the person is already registered for that offense," Lamb said. The sheriff or whoever he appoints to oversee the registration has three days to submit the registration to the Missouri State Highway Patrol.
"All registrants have to report annually, in person in the month of their birth, to the county to verify the information contained in their initial registration," Lamb said.
He said this applies when a person changes his address within the same county.
"They have 10 days to present this in writing," Lamb said. He said this also applies when a person changes employment or enters a higher institution of education. Lamb said a person has seven days to report these changes to the sheriff's office.
"Predatory and persistent sexual offenders in Oregon County have to register with our office every 90 days. This also applies to any offender who is registered in the county for a crime involving someone under 18 years old or someone who in the past has failed to register," he said.
Lamb said the list of registered sex offenders can be released from the sheriff's office upon written request. He said anyone with Internet access in the county can obtain a list of all the sex offenders by going to www.publicdata.com and entering the zip code of the community where they live.
A visit to this Web site revealed that Thayer leads the count of registered sex offenders with 14. Of those offenders, 12 are from Missouri, one from Arkansas and one from Iowa. All the sex offenders in Thayer were men with the exception of one woman.
Alton has 12 registered sex offenders, all men, and all from Missouri except for one from Illinois.
Koshkonong has five registered sex offenders and all five committed their crimes in California, and all were men.
Myrtle has two registered sex offenders, both men and both from Missouri.
The Couch community only has one registered sex offender listed, a man who committed his crime in California.