Nothing tugs at your sympathy strings like poor, mistreated sex offenders who are angry that their rights are being violated by law enforcement officials who want to keep trick-or-treaters safe. Yeah, we realize that’s a pretty specific genre of victimhood, but behold: there is a reason we’re bringing it up!
In Butts County, Georgia, an enterprising Sheriff’s Office decided last year that it might be a good idea to put visible signs in the yards of registered sex offenders so that parents and children knew which houses to avoid on Halloween.
“WARNING,” say the signs. “NO TRICK-OR-TREAT AT THIS ADDRESS!!!”
Now, that may seem like a bit much for some kid who got busted peeing behind a dumpster when he was sixteen, but let’s face it: If you go look at the sex offenders registered in your community, this “innocent” type of charge is by far the exception to the rule. The truth is that most of these people have very good reason to be on a list, and parents have very good reasons for wanting to know exactly where they are. It seems to us that putting these signs up is a matter of public service.
But of course, the sex offenders…well, they’re offended.
From NBC News:
Butts County Sheriff Gary Long’s office placed the large white signs in the offenders’ yards last Halloween and had plans to do it again this year, but the federal class-action lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court in Macon, Georgia, hopes to stop it.
According to the lawsuit, one deputy told an offender he could be arrested if he removed the sign before Halloween night.
The suit, which says it is on behalf of all of the registered sex offenders in the county southeast of Atlanta, contends that the placing of the signs violates laws against trespassing on private property and the plaintiffs’ constitutional rights against forced speech.
The sex offenders also claim in the suit that they were left humiliated and embarrassed by last year’s signs. They are asking a federal judge to declare the practice by the sheriff’s office “unlawful and invalid.”
Did you hear that? These poor perverts were “humiliated and embarrassed” by the signs. Doesn’t it just break your heart…
“This Thursday, we will argue to the Federal Court that we are protecting our children and following Georgia Law by placing these signs,” said Sheriff Gary Long on Facebook. “Regardless of the Judge’s ruling this Thursday, I WILL do everything within the letter of the Law to protect the children of this Community.”
Here’s hoping justice prevails in this case, but we understand the judge is an Obama-appointee, so Sheriff Long should probably prepare for the worst.