Curry County Sheriff’s officers recently spent three days conducting a first-ever sex-offender sweep to ensure those convicted were complying with registration requirements — arresting two in the process.
Local law enforcement worked with the officers from the U.S. Marshals, and Brookings, Gold Beach, Port Orford and state police from April 23 to April 25.
According to Sheriff John Ward, Curry County is home to 165 sex offenders who are required to be registered with the state; of those 42 were out of compliance by not being registered, having moved out of state, died or deported, among other reasons.
During the sweep, the teams attempted to contact 153 people. They verified 93 addresses, another 18 bad addresses, got 12 back into compliance and were unable to locate the other 42. They also issued two warnings and cited and released another two.
Simultaneously, the sheriff’s parole and probation officers were checking in with their clients in North County and — unrelated to the sex compliance sweep — found a vehicle stolen from Lane County. Two other stolen vehicles were recovered in South County.
Arrested in those incidents were Daniel Knapp, 50, of Port Orford on charges of unauthorized use of a motor vehicle. In South County, Scott Vandecar, 28, of Crescent City, was arrested on the same charges.
There were 14 warrant arrests and 23 others were cleared.
The U.S. Marshals were the lead agency in the operation, and all information was compiled for further action on those found to be out of compliance.
The U.S. Marshals have done several other sweeps of this nature in other counties, Ward reported.
“The cooperation among all agencies was key to the successful mission,” he said.
The U.S. Marshals office is tasked to investigate crimes based on the Adams Walsh Act, which allows law enforcement to track offenders to states to which they may have moved and not re-registered.
Under the 2006 Adam Walsh Child Safety and Protection Act, that is a federal offense, said Supervisory deputy Tim Sundheim. Adam Walsh was abducted in 1981 in Florida; his body was found in a canal.
“Prior to that, someone might move away and there was no way to track that,” Sundheim said of the difficulty in keeping track of predators. “A lot of times, a warrant is issued, but other states wouldn’t extradite them. We identify them and potentially charge them federally.”
They located a Curry County offender in a mental facility who was not on the state register and had a warrant issued for his arrest about four years ago, Sundheim said. He will be arrested on that warrant when he is released in December.