Ohio Bill Would Make Sex Offenders Display Green License Plates

Thursday , November 08, 2007



A controversial bill to require sex offenders to display neon green license plates is making waves between Ohio lawmakers and law enforcement officials, reports.

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Prosecutors, sheriffs and police chiefs oppose Kristen’s Law, named for 14-year-old Kristen Jackson, who in 2002 was lured from a fair by a paroled sex offender, murdered and her body dismembered.

They say the perpetrators are smart enough to find other ways to corner their victims and fear the plates will cause vandalism and harassment against the offenders, as well as road rage and traffic hazards.

"It won't prevent every crime," said Democratic state Rep. Mike DeBose, who co-sponsored the bill with Republican state Sen. Kevin Coughlin. "It's just a tool in the tool box, but cars are a weapon used by sexual predators. They don't come to the bus stop and try and take kids in a sack."

Family and friends agree.

"If this sex offender had green license plates Kristen would have known to stay away and not to get in his car," said friend Christina Haley.

The bill is in the Ohio Senate Judiciary Committee on Criminal Justice but it was unclear when lawmakers would act on it.