Website, email system pinpoints offenders' locations

Some 5,000 Hoosiers receive email alerts when offender moves into neighborhood.

Indiana Attorney General Steve Carter is promoting the state's Criminal Alert Network to citizens. The program features a website and an email alert system that lets residents know when a registered sex offender has moved to their neighborhoods, the Fort Wayne Journal Gazette reports.

Since its inception, the Criminal Alert Network, has had more than 3 million hits on its Web site and has sent more than 100,000 e-mail notifications to its more than 5,000 subscribers, Carter said.

Allen County Sheriff’s Department Cpl. Jeff Shimkus said the addresses for offenders can change daily and unless residents were checking every day, they may not know that a sex offender has moved into their neighborhood.

The state pays $12,000 to operate the Web site, well worth the cost if the Web site prevents “even one heartache,” Carter said.

The site also includes offenders' work locations.

Each search allows Hoosiers to view a map of their selected area, complete with markers that denote places where a sex offender lives or works. Rolling the mouse pointer over the markers gives a list of offenders at that address.

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