Secret Sweep Nets Non-Compliant Sex Offenders

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RAYTOWN, Mo. - U.S. Marshals, Sheriffs, Police and the area's Cyber Crimes Task Force collaborated in Raytown Thursday to make sure sex offenders are following the law after they're released from jail.

"[We have] zero tolerance," said Jackson Co. Sheriff Mike Sharp.  "If they've changed the color of their hair and haven't told us within three days, that's a violation and they will be charged."

The Jackson County Sheriff's Office has completed several sex offender sweeps since 2009.  It partners with local jurisdictions to do the sweeps and make arrests.  Thursday, it partnered with Raytown police.  The sheriff's office says every sweep has resulted in arrests with local, state and federal charges.  Sharp said the sweeps are important because often times, registered sex offenders become repeat sex offenders.

"It's a secret society," said Sharp.  "They're in constant contact with one another and they're trading pictures and videos back and forth .  These are the ones we really watch for."

Of the 114 counties within Missouri, Jackson County has the highest number of registered sex offenders with just over 2,000 living within county limits.

"It's the responsibility of the sex offender to provide us with this information," said Sharp.  "It was part of their release from prison that they do this.  They have to provide us with every bit of information about themselves - where they work, where they live, what they drive, their cell phones - everything about them. It it's not there, then they aren't compliant."

And that means, sheriffs and police can arrest them on the spot.

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