TAMPA – It’s a night of tricks or treats, and for parents, knowing the scariest homes on the block could offer some peace of mind on Halloween.
Now a smartphone app allows you to track how close sex offenders are to your kids as they go door-to-door asking for treats.
The app links to the National Sex Offender public website , maintained by the U.S. Justice Department. It then taps into your phone’s GPS and shows you where the offenders live nearby.
Tech expert Johnathan Keyser says the app is popular with parents.
“Click on it once and their name, their address, and what charges they’ve been charged with, ” Keyser described.
There are about 1,700 sex offenders and predators in Hillsborough County alone. Detective Kat Poynter with the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office says the chances of encountering a sex offender on Halloween are rare; yet its always a good idea to arm yourself with information.
“Anything that will keep a child safe is definitely a plus. If you have some type of a mechanism like the apps program, you have the FDLE website. All of these are really good information,” Detective Poynter said.
It’s information at your fingertips that may keep your child from knocking on the wrong door this Halloween.
A lot of parents will be armed with their smart phones when they take the kids trick or treating tonight. There are several applications you can download to help stir clear of sex offenders. Fox 13 Gloria Gomez, shows us how they work.
Gloria Gomez: It’s a night of tricks or treats. And for parents knowing the scariest homes on the block could offer some piece of mind on Halloween. Now a smart phone app allows you to track how close sex offenders are to your kids as they go door to door asking for treats.
Jonathan: You can kind of zoom in and zoom out see anyone in the area that’s registered as sex offender.
Gloria Gomez: A smart phone sex offender app links to the national sex offender registry then taps in to your cellphone’s GPS and shows you where the offenders live nearby. Tech expert Jonathan Keeser says the app is popular with parents.
Jonathan: Click on them once and it gives a little reference their name, their address and what charges they’d been charged with.
Gloria Gomez: There are about 1700 sex offenders and predators in Hillsborough county alone.
Kat: Know where you’re going. Plan it out.
Gloria Gomez: Detective Kat Poynter with Hillsborough County Sheriff’s office says, that chances of encountering a sex offender on Halloween are rare. Yet it is always a good idea to arm yourself with information.
Pat: If anything that will keep a child safe is you know, definitely a plus, you got some type of a mechanism such as the APPS Program, you have the FSOP website all of these things are really good information.
Gloria Gomez: Information at your fingertips that will keep your kids from knocking on the wrong door this Halloween. In Tampa, Gloria Gomez, Fox 13 News.
There are free versions of the Sex Offender APPS, just search for them at the iphone APPS Store or the Android market.