I'd like to see some cases of kids being molested as a result of allowing registered citizens to vote in person. I voted at a school (it was closed for the day), and guess what? NOTHING HAPPENED! The only folks who got screwed is the voters as we had to decide which scumbag was the lesser of two evils.
INVESTIGATION: More than 70 sex offenders are registered to vote at Cleveland schools
11:45 PM, Nov 9, 2016
While registered sex offenders in the state of Ohio are prohibited from living with 1,000 feet of a school or daycare facility, they are not prohibited from actually entering schools.
A News 5 investigation revealed that at least 77 Cleveland sex offenders are registered to vote in the city’s elementary and high schools.
The majority of those offenders were convicted of crimes against children. Most victims were between the ages of 11 and 14, with some victims as young as 5.
Unless a sex offender is currently under some form of community control, Ohio law is otherwise silent on a sex offender’s ability to enter schools and interact with children.
While Cleveland schools were closed Tuesday for the election, several parents noted that large groups of children continue to play on school property long after the final bell and on their days off.
“I really feel like that’s putting more than just kids in danger,” said Cleveland mother Mary Lawrence, whose daughter attends one of the more than 40 elementary and high schools where sex offenders are registered to vote.
Pat McDonald, Director of the Cuyahoga Co. Board of Elections, acknowledged that the issue has raised concerns from voters and some school superintendents.
“I would encourage them to vote by mail or come down here and vote in person to alleviate any potential conflicts or any potential issues,” he said.
But McDonald noted that he can’t actually require sex offenders to do so.
Ohio is one of a handful of states that allows convicted felons to vote, and unlike nearby Indiana and Illinois, does not have such voting requirements.
Former Mahoning County sex crimes prosecutor Natasha Natale told News 5 she considers it a perfect storm of bad conditions.
“It just takes a second for something to happen,” Natale said. “And even it if doesn’t happen at the school it could be something where you’re triggering that mechanism in their brain, where they’re going to leave and commit some subsequent act that could harm a child.”
Natalie is teaming up with Rep. Sean O’Brien (D-Bazetta), to draft a bill that would bar sex offenders from entering schools and daycare centers for any reason.
“It’s just not worth the risk, why put them in that situation?” said O’Brien, who plans to introduce the bill early next year.
O’Brien stressed that sex offenders would still be allowed to vote by mail or in person at the board of elections.
Megan Hickey wasn't the only one who wrote such an article, however. Damon Maloney of WKBN 27 wrote the same fearmongering article in 2014. TWO YEARS AGO. Plagiarism, maybe?
Ohio law doesn’t stop sex offenders from voting in schools
By Damon Maloney
Published: November 4, 2014, 12:06 pm Updated: November 4, 2014, 9:50 pm
YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Where you vote depends on where you live.
Casting a ballot for a lot of people means going to a precinct located inside a school, during the day, when children are learning.
27 Investigates uncovered startling facts about some of the precincts assigned to registered sex offenders for Election Day. At least one local prosecutor and lawmaker believe the assignments can put children’s safety in jeopardy.
“That’s their turf and that’s where they feel safe,” said Natasha Natale, Mahoning County’s sex crimes prosecutor.
Ohio law doesn’t stop sex offenders from voting in schools. Yet, laws do ban many sex offenders from living within 1,000 feet of child day care centers, pre-schools and schools.
Prosecutors say there is too much risk allowing registered sex offenders near or in schools where children are present.
“It’s illogical. It defies logic. I think we need to be pro-active and not wait for a situation where a child is victimized,” Natale said. “There is a recidivism rate that is concerning when it comes to sex offenders.”
Natale has prosecuted some of the most heinous sex crimes involving child victims in Mahoning County. She also has studied the method and operation of sex offenders.
“It can be subtle, slight, psychological… emotionally powerful,” Natale said. “Defendants have stated where it’s something to where it’s even impulsive. It’s something they have difficulty controlling.”
27 Investigates analyzed pages upon pages of Ohio’s sex offender registry and then voter registrations. According to the state’s registry, there are about 179 registered sex offenders in Youngstown. This election cycle, at least nine are registered voters assigned to a school precinct.
In Warren, at least 10 are assigned to a polling place located inside of a school. And In Salem, at least one is assigned to a school precinct.
27 Investigates found that some registered sex offenders have cast in-person ballots in recent years, but not necessarily at the polling place they’re assigned to now. Home addresses can change, which can move a person’s voting location. Precincts also can be dropped or added.
Natale has partnered with State Rep. Sean O’Brien, D-Bazetta, to tighten up what they consider to be a loophole in the law.
“We’ve sat down and talked about drafting a new law, which would put sex offenders where they would have to vote at the board of election or vote by absentee ballot,” O’Brien said.
Other states, including Illinois. require sex offenders to vote early or use absentee ballots. Natale and O’Brien said if Ohio followed in similar footsteps, it would protect voter rights and the peace of mind of families when their children leave home bound for a productive day at school.
O’Brien said it will most likely be next year before any type of legislation is introduced.
There is a common factor in both articles-- Natasha Natale, Mahoning County’s sex crimes prosecutor. Who is this idiot? What education is she referring to? I think she's watching too much reruns of SVU, personally. And why is this poduck, backwater hillbilly persecutor even quoted? Does she have AG aspiration in the future once Mike DeSWINE is ousted? What I do know is she is an idiot.
Lets not forget Rep. Sean O'Brien, who has been pimping this bad legislation in both of these articles. Feel free to write him and tell him your thoughts on this issue.
Representative Sean O'Brien
77 S. High St
Columbus, OH 43215
Phone (614) 466-3488
Fax (614) 719-3965