About the Sex Offender Registration and Notification (SORN) Unit
The Sex Offender Registration and Notification Unit (S.O.R.N.) consists of veteran officers, Deputy Mike Jacobs and Deputy Toby Spencer. They have the duty of keeping all registered sex offenders within Butler County in compliance with their court ordered sanctions. This includes Sexually Oriented Offenders, Sexual Predators, Juvenile Sex Offenders, and any sexual offender convicted after January 2008.
In the State of Ohio, sex offenders are required by law to be classified by their individual sentencing Judge. All sex offenders are placed into one of three categories. The category of the offender dictates the registration and notification requirements to which the offender is subject to.
All sex offenders are required to register with the Sheriff of the county in which they reside within three days of release from prison or moving to a new or different county. Every time a “Predator” (highest level offender) registers, written notifications are mailed to neighbors, schools and registered day cares within a 1,000 foot radius of the offender’s residence. This could mean as few as 5 to 10 postcards to sometimes in the hundreds of postcards to be mailed out, depending on the location of the offender’s residence. Thousands of notifications are typically mailed out on a yearly basis.
In 2013, Butler County has 465 active sex offenders being tracked by the SORN unit. By May 2013, the unit had done 783 registrations and 73 address verifications. Through the investigation of SORN, several offenders have been charged, one of which resulted in a 20 year sentence through federal court after the SORN unit worked a joint operation with another agency.
In 2012, the SORN unit completed 1,765 registrations. There were 502 address verifications completed and numerous investigations conducted. As a result of these investigations, fifty-two sex offenders were charged, generally for failing to notify the Sheriff’s Office of a new address or simply not registering.
In 2011, the SORN Unit registered 1,416 sex offenders. In addition to the registration process this unit also made 280 address verification checks which requires a deputy to respond to an offender’s home and make personal contact with the subject to confirm that he or she does reside at their registered address. Special Deputy Tony McKay assists the unit with these verifications. The SORN Unit also investigated 53 cases involving sex offenders that moved without properly notifying the Sheriff’s Office or had simply failed to register as required by law. These investigations result in Grand Jury hearings and Court proceedings within Butler County. All cases resulted in a conviction of the offender. Currently, there are 762 active sex offenders within Butler County.
In April of 2010, the Butler County Sheriff’s Office, along with the Adult Parole Authority and the U.S. Marshals Service, did a compliance sweep of all registered Sex Offenders in Butler County. The number of registrants at that time was six hundred and sixty-five (665).
Also for the year 2010, the Adam Walsh Act (AWA) was repealed and reversed. This means that all sex offenders that were sentenced prior to January 1, 2008 are classified under AWA, those adjudicated prior to that date remained under their original classifications. Old classifications are Sexually Oriented offender (requires 10 years of annual registering) Sexual Predator (requires registering every ninety days for life) Habitual Offender and Juvenile Offender. Sixty-seven (67) registrants met their maximum registering requirements and were taken out of the ESORN system. In December of 2010 approximately the same number of newly released sex offenders registered in Butler County. Currently there are five hundred and seventy-five (575) registered sex offenders in Butler County. Special Deputy Anthony McKay made more than 160 address compliance verifications while assisting the S.O.R.N unit.