Sunday, August 26, 2012


Sex offenders live among us. New York State publicly identifies as many as it's legally permitted to in its online, searchable "Public Registry of Sex Offenders." 

The registry can be searched in English or in Spanish in any of these three ways:
  • by last name,
  • by county, for a list of sex offenders in the registry in an entire county, and
  • by zip code, for a list of sex offenders in the registry in an entire zip code.
Each person is shown in a front-facing photo along with full name, date of birth, risk level, race, ethnicity, height, weight, hair color, eye color, home and employer's addresses, where the crime was prosecuted, the victim's sex and age (many are children), the name and description of the crime, the sentence given, and locations of tattoos but without a description of them.

The New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services isn't allowed to include information on a public site about Level 1 (low risk) sex offenders or offenders with a pending risk level; information about people in those two categories can't be viewed by the public in the registry.

However, if you don't see someone listed in the registry and you want to know if he or she is a registered sex offender in New York State, call (800) 262-3257. You'll need to know an identifying fact about the person in addition to the name.

Others omitted from the public version of the registry are some Level 2 (moderate risk) offenders and some Level 3 (high risk) offenders because of a lawsuit they're involved in. Call the number above to ask about a specific person.