BRAZOS COUNTY, Texas - It's a fun time for kids to dress up and enjoy Halloween. But a dotted landscape of registered sex offenders paints a different picture.
"It's going to be hard to identify an offender if a child has a crime committed against them," said Charlie Russ, a probation officer for Brazos County. "It's going to be hard for the child to identify who they are."
We told Sarah Richardson, a mother of three, about the more than 240 registered sex offenders in the county. She says her kids are always close.
"They're always within arm's reach," said Richardson. "They're all young ones and I have a special needs child so I'm very aware and very concerned about my kids' well being."
But some of those sex offenders, the ones who are on probation and have a child safety zone requirement, will be spending part of Halloween night at the county's probation office.
"We do that for two purposes," said Russ. "One is obviously to protect the children from any kind of deviant sexual behavior and secondly, it does provide safe net for any offenders who are out there who could be falsely accused."
Those required to be at the probation office will have to stay there from 6 to 9 p.m.
But for those offenders who aren't on probation or parole and have completed their time, they're free.
"You may have some offenders who've been off of probation for five years that have committed a crime against a child who may be at home handing out candy," said Russ, urging parents to be alert.
Richardson says there is nothing to fear.
"It doesn't worry me too much because I'm always there with them," she said.
The county's parole division says sex offenders under its supervision will be required to be at home on lockdown for the evening.
To see a sex offender map for Brazos County, click here.
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