PALOS, IL — There are a combined 17 registered sex offenders living in the Palos Heights, Palos Hills and Palos Park communities, a gain of two from 2022. Ten of the 17 are classified as sex predators; one is incarcerated.
In Illinois, registered sex offenders are prohibited from passing out candy on Halloween. They may not appear in a Halloween costume or other child-centered holiday character, such as Santa or the Easter Bunny, in public. Registered sex offenders, however, may wear a Halloween costume in their home, according to the Illinois Sex Offender Registry.
Palos Heights counts three sex predators, Palos Hills had nine, and Palos Park shows a total of four. Here is where sex offenders are registered as living in the Palos communities. Red pins on the map represent addresses of offenders convicted of sex crimes. Roll your cursor over the pins, and you will see more information pop up, including the registered sex offender’s name, address, date of birth and convictions.
Source: Illinois Sex Offender Registry
The U.S. Department of Justice, which oversees the National Sex Offender Public Website, estimates that only about 10 percent of perpetrators of child sexual abuse are strangers to the child.
The Justice Department estimates 60 percent of perpetrators are known to the child but are not family members but rather family friends, babysitters, child care providers and others, and 30 percent of child victims are abused by family members. Nearly a quarter of the abusers are under the age of 18, the department estimates.
The Association for the Treatment of Sex Abusers, a nonprofit organization for clinicians, researchers, educators, law enforcement and court officials involved in sexual abuse cases, cautions that children do not face a heightened risk during the Halloween season: “There is no change in the rate of sexual crimes by non-family members during Halloween. That was true both before and after communities enacted laws to restrict the activities of registrants during Halloween. The crimes that do increase around Halloween are vandalism and property destruction, as well as theft, assault, and burglary.”