Sex offender Halloween rules: Milwaukee police, DOC check homes

Some of Milwaukee's finest did some door-knocking Sunday, Oct. 31 – but they weren't trick-or-treating.

On a windy Halloween morning, several dozen police officers and officials with the Wisconsin Department of Corrections (DOC) took their daily briefing in a parking lot.

"Our teams are going out in the field with law enforcement today in order to do some checks on registered sex offenders in the community," said Marnie Ohrmund with DOC. "They’ll be walking up, looking to make sure there are no obvious signs that the clients are participating in any way with Halloween decorations, or that they have bowls of candy or anything outside that would attract children."

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The bit of Halloween door-knocking did not allow the teams to leave with candy. Those signs of celebrating the holiday, as Ohrmund described, are against the terms of registered sex offenders' release.

"We’ve had a pretty good record of success with our clients not violating the rules. There are always exceptions," Zachary Wisniewski with DOC said.

Milwaukee police and Wisconsin DOC officials perform Halloween checks of registered sex offenders in the community.

FOX6 News followed a pair of DOC officials around Sunday, as they performed the checks.

"A good visit is safe for everybody," said Wisniewski. "It’s also a visit where there is no contraband our illegal activity found."

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Some violations were found, but none that warranted an arrest.

"(The client) was home. He was outside, however – he was working on a car," Wisniewski said. "We told him he needs to be in his house. The visit was fine, there were a couple small decorations on the door but nothing super consequential.

"That’s one of the complicated things about this is sometimes our clients live with family, and family can’t really be bound by the same rules because they’re not under supervision. So we have to exercise some judgment, but in this case, though, they’re going to keep the porch light off. There was no candy in the residence, so it doesn’t appear they’re going to be participating."

Law enforcement and DOC officials said that all trick-or-treaters – and their parents – should be aware of the neighborhood that kids walk.


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