Police offer tips for protecting kids from sex offenders on Hall - WNEM TV 5

Police offer tips for protecting kids from sex offenders on Halloween

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SAGINAW, MI (WNEM) -

Little witches and superheroes have one thing on their minds on Halloween: candy.

But do you really know who is behind the door, answering the question: trick or treat?

“Because you don't know who you are asking to give your child candy,” said Saginaw Sheriff Bill Federspiel.

In many neighborhoods, sex offenders can live just down the street.

In fact, in Saginaw alone, there are 449 sex offenders on the Michigan registry.

Federspiel said this is why parents should know where their kids are going on Halloween.

“It's important to plan your route out. I don't recommend just driving around looking for neighbors that you think have the best candy,” Federspiel said.

In many states, there are rules for those on the sex offender list.

Things like, they can't decorate for Halloween, or have to turn their light off for trick-or-treat.

But in Michigan, no such rules exist.

However, many do have restrictions to not be around children, which Halloween invites.

“That could fall under the category of inviting kids over to your house to give them candy. So those are things we'd have to look at on a case by case basis,” Federspiel said.

Parents can keep track of where sex offenders may be, on your phone. Just download one of many free apps, and pay attention as you walk with your kids.

Federspiel also said parents should check the registry before they head out for Halloween.

The holiday is meant to be fun, and all about candy. It shouldn't be an open invite to a predator

“It's almost a carnival atmosphere,” Federspiel said. “They could be separated from you, be lured into a house for an extra treat, so make sure that you have good supervision of your kids.”

Copyright 2015 WNEM (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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