In Birmingham, Mobile, Huntsville or other Alabama cities, criminal sexual behaviortakes many forms. Pedophilia is one area of sex crimes that society and law enforcement fight hard to control. An individual accused of being a sexual predator has an uphill battle to start with, but a conviction for this type of behavior will affect a person for the rest of his or her life. As a Birmingham criminal defense lawyer, I have represented numerous people arrested for sexually-based offenses, as well as other crimes, such as theft, drugs and assualt.
A recent news article pointed up the lengths that communities will go to protect their children from pedophiles. According to reports, Redland Elementary School has initiated a pilot security program with which the administrators can perform a background check on any person visiting the school by scanning the person's driver's license before issuing a pass to that individual.
The program is designed to protect the elementary school children againstregistered sex offenders, namely pedophiles. Said one law enforcement official, “A school is a candy store for pedophiles and we don't want them shopping here.”
The system being tested at Redland Elementary is part of a visitor verification and sex offender checking system. Redland is reportedly serving as the pilot program for “QUICK ACCESS,” a Web-based system that alerts school officials if a known sex offender attempts to gain access to the school.
Pedophiles are typically prohibited by law to live or approach within a certain radius of a school. This latest system is apparently designed to root out those individuals who are currently in the sex offender database and who violate state law requiring sex offenders to stay away from areas with a high density of children, such as elementary schools and other educational facilities.
The equipment used in Redford Elementary School reportedly cost about $900. It includes a camera and a scanning/printing device. According to the article, a school staff member simply scans the visitor's Alabama driver's license, or types in the visitor's name. So long as the individual is not on the sex offender database, the machine then prints out a visitor's badge including a bar code. The system also records when visitors arrive and when they leave the school.
Security program piloted at Redland, thewetumpkaherald.com, December 4, 2009