Location of a state probation office in Claremore has some parents concerned

Monday, October 31st 2005, 10:58 am
By: News On 6

A state probation office some people say is too close for comfort.

Violent and sexual offenders from across Rogers County have to come to register at an office just across the street from an elementary school.

News on 6 anchor Scott Thompson says parents are obviously upset. They say having convicted criminals so close to their kids is a major cause for concern.

The probation office is down the street from Stuart Roosa Elementary in Claremore and directly across from the Claremore Zebras' football field.

Claremore Police Chief Mickey Perry had no say in where the office set up shop and he says for some sex offenders, checking in at the office could violate the terms of their sentence. Some sex offenders aren't allowed to be within 300 feet of a school.

The chief is working with the Oklahoma Department of Corrections to find an alternate place for those offenders to register. In the meantime, Chief Perry has been working closely with Claremore schools to keep on top of the situation. "It's not something I'm comfortable with, but it's something I think we've with the school, worked out to make as safe as possible."

Concerned parent Lacey Shirley: "I feel bad for the offenders, because maybe they are trying to do better and make a better life for themselves, but at the same time, we have to protect our kids."

The probation office has been across from the school and the football field for about a year and Claremore Police say there haven't been any problems.