After , Sheriff’s Office personnel have made five arrests and are investigating several other 290 PC registrants who may have violated their sex offender registration requirements, Sgt. Jose Cardoza of the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s said.
The Sheriff’s Office Sexual Assault Felony Enforcement Task Force (SAFE) was tasked with physically contacting and interviewing all known South County residents with a sexual assault conviction in an attempt to gather information in the disappearance of Sierra LaMar, 15, who was last seen at her Morgan Hill home over a month ago.
SAFE officials contacted the active sexual assault offenders registered in the South County area, but five apparently failed to register as required by California law.
However, the arrested individuals were not detained in connection with the Sierra LaMar case.
"The sexual offenders were contacted because of their status within the past month that we’ve been doing all the checks, and it just happened that they were out of compliance and arrested on unrelated charges," Cardoza said. “It’s related, but not. Had they not been contacted because of the Sierra LaMar case, most likely they wouldn’t have been arrested."
Sexual offenders are required to register every year on their birthday and receive a card they carry on them afterward. If individuals convicted of a sexual assault aren't carrying their cards when contacted by police, authorities typically call the dispatch center to see if they’re current on their registration or out of compliance, Cardoza said.
“The reasons why they were found to be out of compliance, I don't know,” Cardoza said. “It’s either because they didn’t have their updated card on them or dispatch found they were out of compliance or somehow violated the requirements.”
There are a number of reasons a sexual offender may be found out of compliance, like moving to a different address. In that case, the sexual offender is required to register their new address within five working days, and sexual offenders who own multiple properties are required to register all their homes.
Follow-up investigations on the arrested individuals and a couple others who may be out of compliance are currently taking place, Cardoza said.
Gilroy police arrested an individual on Iris Drive on April 20th for failing to register as a sex offender, but it’s not known whether the suspect is one of the individuals being investigated by the Sheriff's Office.
The individual was brought down to the Gilroy Police Department, but was released because police needed to conduct further investigation, Gilroy Police Sgt. Chad Gallacinao said. The case is currently being reviewed by the District Attorney’s office, and the individual’s name won’t be released until the review is finished.
Patch is currently trying to gather more information about the sexual offenders who failed to register, and will update this post when and if more information is released.
For previous coverage of the Sierra LaMar case, refer to the Sierra LaMar Disappearance: Comprehensive Updates and Information page.
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