Report: Sex offenders migrating to Kansas from Missouri

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A report released by a Missouri newspaper shows Kansas is on the receiving end of a flood of sex offenders, due to the Show Me State’s tough treatment of offenders.

The report by the Columbia Missourian said that roughly 512 former Missouri registrants moved to Kansas in the last two years, 2500 to other states in the Midwest. The KBI responded to KAKE News late Monday to say that number was lower, at just more than 420.

The article sites that Kansas is one of 20 states with no sex offender residency restrictions, and that many sex offenders “shop around” to move to states with looser restrictions.

The news surprised parents in Wichita, including Chelsea Metoyer. She feels safe taking her kids to parks and letting them play outside at night, but she admits she’s disturbed by a new report about a growing the growing sector of the state’s population.

“IT’s an alarming, shocking, scary number,” she said. “Why are our laws so much different? Why so much more lenient? Why are they coming here? What are other states doing that we’re not doing? What can we change? Do better? That’s an alarming number.”

Rep. Jim Ward agrees, saying that while he believes prosecutions and convictions for offenders have been tough in the state, he wants to see if they can be tougher post time served.

“What does Missouri do, in terms of this kind of supervision? And what kind of costs are associated with it? So that we can review the Kansas policy because we certainly don’t want to be a destination for sex offenders,” he said.

Ward wants to review the existing laws and start analyzing other states, including Missouri.

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