Sex Offender Looks To Move Back To Mayes County Home Near School

Monday, March 17th 2014, 10:34 pm
By: News On 6

A registered sex offender is asking a Mayes County judge to allow him to move back into his home, which is near a school. Some neighbors are looking for ways to keep the sexual predator off their street.

People who live on Colonial Drive in Pryor call it a calm, quiet street. That's why Melissa Hunsaker does not want a registered sex offender to disrupt the peace.

"They say that Pryor is like Mayberry. This street really is like that," said Hunsaker.

According to court documents, Gary Hunt pleaded guilty to possessing child pornography in 2008. He was released from prison last year and now he's asking a judge to let him move back into his house on Colonial Drive, which sits within 2,000 feet from an elementary school, a park and a daycare.

"We have a lot of kids on this street," Hunsaker said. "There are always kids walking up and down this street, riding their bicycles. It's not a neighborhood we need a sex offender in."

According to court records, Hunt argues he bought his home in 2000, which was three years before the Sex Offender Registration Act, banning sexual predators from living near schools. He claims he should be grandfathered in.

Documents say Hunt is unable to buy a new home because he is physically disabled and his only income is his state retirement and Social Security benefits.

"The law was imposed in that we're trying to keep children and other people safe from alleged offenders and that's the purpose of the law," said Mayes County Assistant District Attorney, Larry Edwards.

Edwards is the first assistant for the Mayes County District Attorney's office. Hunt's petition lists the DA, the City of Pryor and Pryor Police as the defendants.

"In normal circumstances we are presented law enforcement police reports and then we make a determination on what charges, if any, should be filed based on that," Edwards said. "They're wanting us to do that without the prior investigation, and we feel very uncomfortable doing something like that."

Phone calls to Hunt's attorney were not returned.

The Pryor City Council is expected to meet behind closed doors Tuesday regarding the issue.