MADIGAN, LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICIALS CHECK IN ON
Compliance Sweep Focuses on Child Pornographers
Chicago – Investigators from Attorney General Lisa Madigan’s office, the Chicago Police Department, the U.S. Marshals Service and the Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC) have completed an intensive three-day operation to assess the compliance status of 70 convicted child pornographers currently registered as living in Chicago. Madigan’s office and members of the Illinois Sex Offender Registry Team (I-SORT) routinely conduct compliance checks around the State to ensure that registered sex offenders are living where they say they are. Investigators from Madigan’s office joined I-SORT partners in the operation conducted last Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.
“It is critical that we know the whereabouts of sex offenders registered in Illinois,” Madigan said. “My office and the I-SORT team are constantly working to verify registration information and make sure that we know where offenders are living.”
During the three-day operation the team checked the registered addresses of 70 convicted child pornographers. As a result of the check, the team verified the registration addresses for 33 offenders, determined that six offenders were noncompliant, and left notices for 31 offenders, advising them to check in by calling the I-SORT hotline. Over the coming days, the team will follow-up with seven offenders who were left notices but have not yet checked in.
“We applaud the team approach of the Illinois Sex Offender Registry Team and encourage other law enforcement agencies to take similar actions. It is in our collective best interests to know where these offenders are,” said Chicago Police Juvenile Advocacy Commander Robert Hargesheimer.”
The team will continue working on locating the six noncompliant offenders. Specifically, as a result of the compliance check, the Attorney General’s office has added the six newly-discovered noncompliant offenders to the Attorney General’s Operation Location Unknown website. The website highlights 10 different noncompliant offenders each month and asks members of the public to visit the site and provide the whereabouts of anyone they may know.
The Operation Location Unknown link is available on the Attorney General’s website at www.illinoisattorneygeneral.gov. Members of the public with information concerning the whereabouts of these, or any other noncompliant sex offender, are urged to call I-SORT at 1-888-41-ISORT (1-888-414-7678); or by sending an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.
“Operation Location Unknown, allows us to focus on those sex offenders in Illinois who don’t want to be found,” said Geoff Shank, commander of the Great Lakes Regional Fugitive Task Force of the U.S. Marshals Service. “This is another example of how the cooperation among various law enforcement agencies will ultimately lead to safer streets for our children.”
“The Illinois Department of Corrections is committed to ensuring that sex offenders comply with the strict measures of their parole requirements and sex offender registration laws,” said IDOC Director Roger E. Walker Jr. “The department continues to be dedicated to the success of the Illinois Sex Offender Registry Task Force in its collaboration with city, county, state and federal law enforcement agencies to address public safety.”
Madigan created I-SORT in December 2003 to increase compliance with the registration laws and improve the information available on the state’s sex offender registry. Since then, I-SORT has undertaken comprehensive and ongoing efforts to improve the registration process and solve problems with the system. Since its inception, I-SORT members have conducted targeted raids and used tips from the I-SORT hotline to locate noncompliant offenders, worked to improve the accuracy of the information on the sex offender website and launched a public awareness campaign to publicize the importance of the website as a tool to protect families.
As of June 1, 2007, Illinois State Police statistics show compliance with Illinois’ sex offender registration requirements at more than 92 percent, up from the 86 percent compliance rate when I-SORT was first announced. Madigan notes that while I-SORT members are pleased with this increase in compliance, they have more work to do and are continuing their extensive and aggressive efforts to improve the accuracy and usefulness of the information on the registry. The Illinois Sex Offender Registry is located at www.isp.state.il.us.