Officials urge parents to double-check neighborhoods for sex offenders before Halloween

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MERCER COUNTY, WV (WVNS)– With trick or treating just a few days away parents are being encouraged to double-check their neighborhood to make sure their ghouls and goblins stay safe from predators. West Virginia State Police and child advocates are stressing the importance of checking the sex offender database before hitting new neighborhoods this spooky season. 

“We always recommend using common sense when you take your child out,” Tonya Milam, Manager of Starting Points said. “Make sure you’re only visiting areas that have the light on or someone handing out candy. “

Tonya Milam is the Manager is Starting Points and Child Protect in Mercer County.  She said it is important to go with your gut when approaching houses with kids of all ages. 

“If an area doesn’t look safe, we don’t recommend going to an area that you feel unsure about,” Milam added.

She adds it may seem like a no-brainer to send out older trick or treaters alone, but, having at least one adult present is beneficial to safety.  As for little pumpkins, safety comes in numbers and it is important all those out for a spooky good time follow all trick or treating safety measures.  

“Make sure you’re in a well-lit area,” Milam said. “Make sure your child has a flashlight or glowstick, obey those trick or treating times from 6-8.”

A link to the state sex offenders database can be found here.

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