Town decides against residency restrictions based on research

By Rebecca Kanable . . . A sex offender expert with the Wisconsin Department of Corrections on Monday discouraged the Harmony Town Board from passing an ordinance restricting where sex offenders could live in the town.

The town board later tabled its proposed ordinance again during a lengthy meeting.

The sex offender ordinance was proposed after board members learned that multiple sex offenders were living in the former Pine Tree Inn, 4544 W. Highway 14, which is now operated by the Jessie Crawford Recovery Center.

Sex offender registration specialist Robert Fugate said about 93% of child sex offenders know their victims, and more than three-quarters of adult sex offenders know their victims.

“Stranger-on-stranger incidences are very rare, and they garner a lot more media attention because of how rare they actually are,” he said.

Fugate said he used to work in Walworth County, which has many sex offender ordinances. In communities with such ordinances, the rate of homelessness increases for offenders, he said.

Read the full piece here at GazetteXtra.

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