Offender Web link will move up front

PASCAGOULA

Jackson County supervisors decided Monday to move the county’s link to a national sex-offender database to the front of the county Web site for easier public access.

They said they want to encourage people living in the county to use it.

“So they’ll be aware of where these people are and keep an eye on them,” said Supervisor John McKay, who asked for the change when he had trouble finding the link.

Board President Mike Mangum recommended a quick link at the top of the county’s page.

Chief Deputy Don Stewart said, “I’d have it blinking.”

Stewart said the more people are aware, the better.

The sheriff’s office linked to the database two years ago and also committed to having two full-time officers assigned to sex offenders and sex crimes.

The first year, the officers were paid for with a grant. But the county Board of Supervisors picked up the expense the next years so the department could keep them on.

Mangum said he found the link on the county page at the bottom of a list that was accessed through another category of information on the page.

But once located, the link is easy to use, supervisors said; it provides photos and details.

Mangum said he discovered 10 registered sex offenders live within a mile of his home.

McKay said he was surprised to find more in his district in West Jackson County than in other districts.

Link: Sex offender registry

By KAREN NELSON – klnelson@sunherald.com

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