With summer right around the corner many children and adults will be spending more time outside and away from home.
You may know your neighbors, but do you know everyone else living around you. It is a harsh reality, but there are more sex offenders in Muskingum County than Perry, Morgan and Coshocton counties, but lower than Licking County.
"It is just a matter of being familiar with your surroundings and knowing who is living around you," says Sheriff Matt Lutz.
There are a total of 34 Tier One sex offenders in Muskingum County:
TIER ONE SEX OFFENDERS:
28 Tier One Adult Sex Offenders
1 Tier One Child Victim Offender
2 Tier One Juvenile Sex Offenders (juvenile committed the crime)
3 Tier One Juvenile Child Victim Offenders (juvenile committed the crime with a child victim)
There are a total of 128 Tier Two and Three sex offenders in Muskingum County:
TIER TWO AND THREE SEX OFFENDERS:
69 Tier Two Adult Sex Offenders
1 Tier Two Child Victim Offender
3 Tier Two Juvenile Sex Offenders
55 Tier Three Adult Sex Offenders
The different tiers have different restrictions and rules, but the Muskingum County Sheriff’s Deputy Don Yarger keeps tabs on where they are living and working.
"Don has a cruiser that he goes out and checks the sex offenders and sometimes Don will give our regular deputies, names and addresses to go check on and we will go out in the neighborhoods and check where those people are supposed to be," says Sheriff Lutz.
Sheriff Lutz says the majority of offenders follow the guidelines set forth, but several don’t. For those who don’t follow their guidelines, additional charges are filed with the Muskingum County Prosecutor.
To find out if there are sex offenders living around you, go to the Family Watchdog link on the Muskingum County Sheriff’s website. Sheriff Lutz says his office takes community concerns and tips very seriously.
"If they report something to us we make it a high priority to check on those things and see what we can find out," tells Sheriff Lutz.
And he has some simple advice for parents.
"One of the things I have seen in my 21 years of law enforcement is, I think it is very important for people to know where their kids are at and raising kids today in this society, I think it is very important to control who your kids run around with," says Sheriff Lutz.
Sheriff Lutz says the best way to protect yourself and your family is to be as aware of your surroundings as possible.