Windsor Locks is doing away with so-called “Child Safety Zones.”
Voters decided to repeal the rule which stops registered sex offenders from going to certain spots. Right now the town is dealing with a lawsuit over those zones.
“You want your kids to be safe. You don’t want them to be caught with problems with people,” Kathy Boesch of Windsor Locks, said.
At a town meeting on Tuesday, people voted to repeal the ordinance which barred registered sex offenders from going to parks, schools, the library and other locations.
“The sex offender shouldn’t be mixed in. They should have certain venues to go to,” Fran Marchese of Windsor, said.
In a statement, First Selectman Chris Kervick, wrote in part:
“The town remains as firmly committed to the safety of our citizens and children today as we have always been.”
Kervick say the decision follows the advice of lawyers as the town defends itself in court. In a federal lawsuit, the town is being sued by a resident and a group called “One Standard of Justice” which advocates for the reform of sex offender laws.
According to court documents, that resident – identified only as John Doe – was convicted of the third-degree sexual assault of a 25-year-old woman back in 1995.
The attorneys for John Doe argued that despite him never being accused of wrongdoing with a child, the “Child Safety Zones” stop him from going to various town buildings and attending some of his own child’s activities.
Now “One Standard of Justice” says it’s “delighted” with the town’s recent decision.
In a statement its executive director Cindy Prizio, wrote in part:
“We thank the town council and its residents for understanding the unconstitutionality of the ordinance, its harmful effect on the entire community and making the absolutely right decision to repeal.”
John Doe’s attorneys argued the rule was too broad and do not make anyone safer. Prizio says since they got the desired outcome there is no need to continue the lawsuit.