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June 26, 2009

MADIGAN, I-SORT PARTNERS ANNOUNCE RESULTS OF QUINCY AREA SEX OFFENDER COMPLIANCE CHECKS

Chicago – Attorney General Lisa Madigan today announced that investigators from her office and Illinois Sex Offender Registry Team (I-SORT) partners conducted compliance checks early Thursday morning of 158 registered sex offenders in Quincy and Adams County. I-SORT law enforcement members routinely work with Attorney General Madigan to conduct compliance checks to ensure that sex offenders are living at the locations where they are registered and not evading detection by law enforcement officials.

"As part of our ongoing community protection work, we partnered with local law enforcement in Adams County to verify that sex offenders are properly registered and living at the address that they have provided," Madigan said. "Thursday's operation sends the message to sex offenders that if they fail to comply with the law, law enforcement will respond."

During Thursday's compliance check, 22 officers from the Quincy Police Department and the Adams County Sheriff's Office teamed with investigators from Madigan's office and the Illinois State Police. They found that eight offenders were not in compliance with Illinois' sex offender registration laws. Attorney General Madigan noted that her office and the participating I-SORT members will investigate and work to ensure that these offenders are located and come into compliance with the Illinois Sex Offender Registration Act. Madigan reported that they determined that 108 offenders were in compliance with the sex offender registration laws.

I-SORT compliance check participants left notices to comply at the residences of the remaining 42 offenders who did not answer or were not home when investigators arrived. If an offender fails to respond to the notice by calling the I-SORT hotline within 24 hours, he may be deemed non-compliant with the requirements of the Illinois Sex Offender Registration Act, which may result in the issuance of a warrant or other law enforcement action.

"Verifying the whereabouts of registered sex offenders is a very important part of public safety in our city," Quincy Police Chief Rob Copley said. "Too often these offenders re-offend so it is important to keep track of them."

"Ensuring compliance with the Sex Offender Registry is a priority program in the Adams County Sheriff's Office and we welcome the opportunity to team with Attorney General Madigan and our Quincy and State Police colleagues to protect our younger citizens in particular from those who might re-offend," said Chief Deputy Sheriff Fred Kientzle.

Attorney General Madigan created I-SORT in December 2003 to ensure greater compliance with the state's sex offender registration laws. Since then, I-SORT has undertaken comprehensive and ongoing efforts to improve the registration process and solve problems with the system. Led by Madigan's office, I-SORT members have conducted targeted raids and used tips from the sex offender hotline to locate non-compliant offenders, worked to improve the accuracy of the information on the sex offender Web site and launched a public awareness campaign to publicize the importance of the Web site as a tool to protect families.

"Knowing where sex offenders reside within our communities is critical to the safety of the citizens of Illinois," said Illinois State Police Director Jonathon Monken. "Periodic compliance checks provide an important tool in maintaining public safety and keep sex offenders on notice that the sex offender registry laws are aggressively enforced."

As of June 1, 2009, Illinois State Police records list 20,484 registered sex offenders in Illinois. Compliance with Illinois' sex offender registration requirements now stands at 92.7 percent. Madigan said that when I-SORT was formed, 86 percent of Illinois' sex offenders were in compliance with the registration requirements. Madigan noted that while I-SORT members are pleased with this increase in compliance, they are continuing their extensive and aggressive efforts to improve the accuracy and usefulness of the information on the registry.

Interested individuals can access the Illinois Sex Offender Registry at www.isp.state.il.us and can call the Attorney General's I-SORT Hotline at 1-888-41-ISORT.

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