When sex convicts don’t register

From swanky Blue Ridge Road to the Salvation Army, they live among us: convicted sexual offenders. But as NBC29 reports, not all of them have registered.

The TV station is reporting on the case of 38-year-old Joseph Alberts who moved from North Carolina to Poplar Street in Charlottesville without registering himself, as required by law, with the state Police, which keeps a fact- and photo-filled website of convicted sex offenders (complete with maps.)

That failure brought concern from neighbors and from state Delegate Rob Bell, according to the NBC 29 report.

The report also found that 27-year-old Gerald Blum of Afton, convicted of a sex crime nearly 11 years ago, is another man who failed to register his whereabouts, although he seems to have remedied that situation following a recent arrest.

A year ago, a group called Protect declared that 3,000 registered sex offenders have gone AWOL and urged the General Assembly to take action. The “Safe Kids Initiative” passed the General Assembly nearly unanimously earlier this year. The series of bills were signed into law on April 24 and create harsher punishments, as well as electronic tracking of certain offenders.

Update: Real Central VA has an interesting story: that a sex offender in the neighborhood can lower the value of your house by 17%.