There are 20-30 registered sex offenders in the city of Placerville at any given time, according to Placerville Police Chief George Nielsen, and 150-160 in the West Slope. “This includes the homeless and there is a high incidence of recidivism,” said Nielsen at the Placerville City Council meeting. “Convicted sex offenders continue to be more likely than any other type of offender to re-offend for another sexual assault.”
At Tuesday’s meeting, the City Council adopted an ordinance extending the prohibitions and penalties for registered sex offenders in the city. The ordinance is intended to supplement state law by adding specificity to the definition of parks, schools and child care centers where registered sex offenders are prohibited .
In 2006, the City Council adopted an urgency ordinance entitled Sexual Offenders’ Proximity to Children’s Facilities in response to section 290 of the California Penal Code which regulated the residence of registered sex offenders but failed to address other areas of child safety.
“Placerville was one of the first municipalities to be proactive in limiting where registered sex offenders could be in relation to where children congregate,” said Nielsen.
Recently the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors enacted a similar ordinance, using part of the city’s original ordinance and expanding upon it. The El Dorado County District Attorney’s Office requested that Placerville adopt the newer ordinance in order to provide consistent enforcement throughout the county.
Registered sex offenders must not be on or within 300 feet of the grounds of any park, school or child care center. Now included in the city ordinance under the definition of “parks” are any of the parks and recreation areas identified on the city’s Website at cityofplacerville.org and the portion of the El Dorado Trail that is situated within the city.
“Child Care Centers” include any facility licensed by the state of California providing non-medical care to children, including family day-care homes, infant center, preschool, extended day-care facilities or school-age child care center. It also includes any children’s swimming pools located at an athletic club or facility. Adjacent public parking areas, the driveway, entrance way or pedestrian walkway used by the public for access to any of these facilities is also prohibited to convicted sex offenders.
“Schools” includes the buildings, grounds and parking lots of any public or private school used for the education of children in kindergarten or grades 1-12, and any private or public facility whose primary purpose is to provide classes for children. School bus stops and libraries are also on the prohibited list.
A first conviction of violating the ordinance results in up to 6 months in jail or a fine of up to $500, or both. A second violation results in 10 days to 6 months imprisonment and a fine of up to $500. A third violation results in 90 days to 6 months imprisonment, or imprisonment and a $500 fine.
There was no discussion from the public or the City Council about this ordinance and it was approved by a 4-0 vote. The ordinance goes into effect in 30 days on Aug.9.
Contact Wendy Schultz at 530 344-5069 or email@example.com. Follow @wschultzMtDemo on Twitter.