The New Hanover County Sheriff’s office expanded its two man sex offender unit in the middle of June, adding four deputies for a summer operation to track down unregistered predators.
“Its a big job. At any given time we have approximately 238 sex offenders registered to New Hanover County,” said Det. Sandi Macon of the Sex Offender Registration Unit.
By law, after an offender is convicted of a sex crime, he or she has three business days to register with the county. The offender must provide a valid address, which is uploaded into a data base for the public.
“The important thing is that the people in the community know where the registered sex offenders are,” said New Hanover County Sheriff Ed McMahon.
The work of the task force put six men behind bars for registering a wrong or outdated address, including one extradited from Virginia. They are looking for three more. Gary Reed was convicted of indecent liberties with a minor in 1998. Nieto Middlebrooks was convicted of the same charge in 2007. Jamahl Taylor attempted rape in 1994.
While each were registered with the county, their registered addresses were wrong. “It is important to me that those addresses are correct, because if I lived in a neighborhood, I would want to know who my neighbors are,” Sheriff McMahon said.
McMahon added while the sex offender task force was a summer time effort, tracking sex offenders is a year long challenge. “Although the deputies will go back to their regular assignments we’ll still be keeping a close watch on this.”
You can find out if a sex offender is registered, and living in your neighborhood by visiting, www.NewHanoverSheriff,com.
The sheriff’s office is asking anyone with any information about the whereabouts of the three offenders to call 910-798-4200.