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Sex offender housed in motel assaults motel owner's daughter

Sensible Sentencing Group Trust (SSGT) Victim Advocate Karrin Coates said she cannot understand how government agencies are willing to risk the lives of our most innocent children!! “This is the second time an offence has been committed by a registered sex offender who was housed in a motel. How many more childrens’ lives are going to be harmed before this type of preventable practice is stopped!!”

Only weeks ago, it was reported that repeat sex offender Ronald Jeffries will be facing four counts of breaching his conditions by having contact with children without permission. Jeffries was housed at the United motel in Palmerston North which is also used by MSD to house vulnerable families.

The registered sex offender in this latest case, and who cannot be named due to name suppression, was released from prison in May after serving an 11-month sentence. He was meant to be released to a family address, but a last-minute change saw him relocated to a motel in Nelson. The same motel that was providing emergency accommodation for vulnerable families at the time. Within two weeks of staying at the Motel he had sexually assaulted the young victim.

Corrections Minister Kelvin Davis has said "motels could only be approved for former prisoners when all other options had been exhausted, and specific consideration had to be given to whether children or vulnerable adults were sharing the accommodation." He also said that because the department had to comply with the Privacy laws, ex-prisoners private details can only be given if the person gives consent, or in some instances, if there is a serious safety risk. An outraged Karrin asked “How can this not be classed as a serious safety risk? You do not put a known sex offender in an environment where there are children – full-stop!!”

Karrin said “I would like to ask Corrections Minister Kelvin Davis, were the families, the innocent children considered when this registered sex offender was housed in this Nelson motel? And were the families, the innocent children considered when Ronald Jeffries was housed in the United motel in Palmerston North?”

How many more innocent victims are going to put at risk before the Government wakes up and realises housing sex offenders with vulnerable families is NOT a safe option!!

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