Friday, July 12, 2024

No light, no candy

| October 28, 2014 9:00 PM

COEUR d'ALENE - On Halloween night, a house without a porch light might not mean the resident is against the notion of trick-or-treating.

It could be the home of a registered sex offender.

Under state law, sex offenders who are on probation or parole are required to keep their porch lights darkened the night of Halloween. A press release from the Idaho Sheriff's Association states that these offenders are also not allowed to answer their doors.

"For the safety of you, your children, and the registered sex offender, if the porch light is not on, do not trick-or-treat at this residence," the association cautions.

According to data on the Idaho Sheriff's Association website, Post Falls is home to 80 sex offenders. There are 16 sex offenders living in Coeur d'Alene, 34 in Hayden and 28 in Rathdrum.

Kootenai County Sheriff's Office Lt. Stu Miller told The Press Monday that deputies do not do targeted patrols on the homes of registered sex offenders on Halloween.

"As long as they're compliant with us and are registered and in an appropriate place, everything else is done through the probation office," Miller said. "The people that are on supervised release are generally following the rules pretty well."

Issues with registered sex offenders rarely happen on Halloween night, Miller said.

He encouraged county residents to use the Offender Watch program on the sheriff's association's website,, to view a list of registered sex offenders in their neighborhoods and the surrounding areas.

"The best thing is for parents to be familiar with their neighborhood," Miller said. "Be familiar and be wary."

Miller added that the sheriff's office strongly encourages parents and their children to trick-or-treat in groups for additional safety.