ROHNERT PARK-COTATI, CA — Although kids most likely will not go trick or treating this Halloween because of the coronavirus, parents can still take an inventory of who is living in their neighborhood. Rohnert Park and Cotati currently have a combined 50 registered sex offenders, two fewer than were living in the cities this time last year, according to public information listed on the California Department of Justice’s Megan’s Law Website.
The state runs the website, which provides information on registered sex offenders, pursuant to California Penal Code § 290.46, “… so that members of the public can better protect themselves and their families.” The information is pulled from California Sex and Arson Registry.
According to state officials, Rohnert Park has 41 offenders, while Cotati has nine. In Sonoma County, there are 604 registered sex offenders, 119 of whom are transients known to stay within the county.
The below maps from the state’s Megan’s Law website show where sex offenders are registered as living in Rohnert Park, Cotati and Sonoma County as of Oct. 20, 2020. Blue markers show registered sex offenders, while red markers show sex offenders currently accused of being in violation of their registration requirements; a marker with a white plus sign means there are multiple offenders living at one location. It should be noted that yellow markers indicate “sexually violent offenders,” none of whom showed up in Patch’s search of Rohnert Park and Cotati.
VIEW INTERACTIVE MAP
Here’s how to find and view an interactive map of sex offenders in your California community. First, visit the Megan’s Law home page. On the right side of the page, you can enter an address and hit “search.”
There’s some information and a disclaimer you’ll need to read; scroll to the bottom, click that you’ve read the info (once you have, of course) and reCAPTCHA, and click “continue.”
Once you’ve arrived at the search page, you can use the menu on the left side of the screen to search by name, address, city, ZIP code or county. If you’re doing a city search, click on “city” and start typing the city name in the empty field on the left side of the page. Click “search” to generate an interactive map. The number at the top of the map indicates how many postable offenders have addresses in the city. Click on “Show List” to see a list of offenders’ names and addresses, as well as transients and those who are in violation, according to the Department of Justice, of registering in their city of residence.
NOT ALL OFFENDERS LISTED
It’s important to keep in mind that the Megan’s Law site does not list every sex offender living in the community. Under California’s Penal Code section 290, the DOJ is only authorized to display certain types of sex offenders online, according to the agency.
People who have been convicted of a registrable sexual offense that falls into one of the following categories can apply for exclusion from Megan’s Law