Starting January 1, 2018 the Fayette County Sheriff’s Office will launch a new sex offender registration and public notification website called “Offender Watch”. The online-based service is linked to over 5,000 law enforcement agencies, with 40 plus in Illinois.
This site allows residents to search for potentially dangerous sex offenders that may be close to homes, schools, churches or businesses. The website also has notification capabilities. Users can enter addresses into the site and will receive notifications if anyone listed as a sex offender moves into the vicinity.
Fayette County Sheriff Chris Smith says the program is part of the department’s effort to reduce public anxiety by proactively informing residents if an offender should move nearby. The program also assists all law enforcement in ensuring that offenders are not in violation of their conditions.
Smith said the citizens of Fayette County have a right to know who may be living near them and could pose a threat to their families.
The Fayette County law enforcement officers using Offender Watch will have the most up to date information on all offenders registered in our county and surrounding participating counties including Clay, Effingham, Marion, Montgomery and Shelby.
State law mandates sex offenders to register. They are charged $100 per year. Portions of the fee goes into programs like Offender Watch, so there is no cost to the tax payers and no cost to the citizens using this service.