111 sex offenders on Coweta registry

By ELIZABETH RICHARDSON erichardson@newnan.com There are 111 registered sex offenders residing in Coweta County. That number is down from last year's 133 registered offenders reported in April. In 2007, there were 96.
Of the 111 offenders, 16 are presently incarcerated and five have absconded and have active warrants for their arrest. Willie Coleman, Willie Edward Crowder, Randy Tywone Kempson, Tobias Lamond Tillery and Gregory Wells are all wanted for failure to register, according to Investigator Amy Hughes of the Coweta County Sheriff's Office. Hughes joined the sheriff's office on March 23 and is responsible for maintaining the sex offender registry and the evidence room. She is now in the process of verifying the information provided by each registered offender. Most of the list has been verified, but she urges the community to contact the sheriff's office if they don't think the registered address for an offender is correct. Hughes' work doesn't end there. It is her ongoing responsibility to periodically check with each person to ensure they are working and living where they say they are, and that their residence is not in violation of the law. Coweta County has one offender that is considered a sexual predator. David Charles Walker was convicted of committing a lewd and lascivious act on a child in Florida in 1997. He wears an ankle monitor and authorities check in with him at least twice a year, according to Hughes. The remainder of the registered offenders must check in with the sheriff's office once annually within 72 hours of their birthday. The sheriff's office has a new policy requiring offenders to make an appointment for the annual registration. They do not have to make an appointment to change their basic registration information. Hughes also keeps track of sex offenders who are registered in different counties but work in Coweta. It is ultimately the registered offender's responsibility to know the law. Their residency restrictions prohibit them from living within 1,000 feet from a church, school or daycare facility, or an area where minors congregate. They can visit public places -- such as skating rinks, schools, pools or libraries -- for a legitimate purpose, but they are not allowed to loiter. If the offender owned property or established employment prior to July 1, 2006, he or she is not in violation of the law if their property or employment is within 1,000 feet of a prohibited location. They are also grandfathered in under the law if they were living in an area before a church, school or the like decided to build within 1,000 feet. Anyone with concerns about the sex offender list may contact Hughes at the sheriff's office, 770-253-1502.

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