Continuing Coverage: Rules For Sex Offenders on Halloween, Arkansas Lawmakers respond

By Lauren Payne - bio | email feedback

There are approximately 2,200 registered sex offenders in Region 8, according to Missouri and Arkansas sex offender registries.

Unlike Missouri, in  Arkansas, there are no state laws in place restricting those sex offenders interactions with your children specifically on Halloween night.

"That particular situation dealing with sex offenders and Halloween has just directly not ever come before the legislature," said State Senator Paul Bookout, District 14.

Bookout, who is from Jonesboro, says in past legislative sessions they have considered a lot of issues dealing with sex offenders and making the laws tougher on them.   He says this particular one just hasn't been brought up.

Bookout says he would be open to looking into legislation dealing with this specific issue.

"I think anything that protects kids is something worth considering," said State Senator Robert Thompson, District 11.

Paragould's Robert Thompson says when lawmakers  are dealing with any legislation, they want people to get involved, be informed, and give feedback.

"You want to get input from as many people as possible.   From law enforcement, from victims of crimes, from family members of people who have been involved with this.   You want to hear what they have to say," said Thompson.

So we went to the people, and here's what they had to say.

"It's too easy of an opportunity for sex offenders to go out in the streets and pick up anybody they want to.   It would be like a feeding frenzy at the zoo for sharks, said Dave Martin.

"Our children are going to their doors.   I would assume there had to be something in place where they had to say hey, you know, I'm here," said mother of 4, Jamie Dodd.

Bookout says he  would certainly be supportive of taking a look at what other states have done and what has been effective for them.

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