Website Lists Sex Offenders On Florida College, University Campuses
Story by Scott Travis / Sun Sentinel
Posted by Scott T. Smith / CBS12 News
Students have a new tool they can use in their college search: the names of registered sex offenders on campus.
The Florida Sex Offender Registry now includes a search for registered sex offenders and predators attending or working at a state college or university.
"Registered sex offenders in our system of higher education are a harsh reality," said State Sen. Eleanor Sobel, D-Hollywood, who sponsored legislation that funded the effort. "Helping to provide Florida's students the most efficient tools to identify and inform themselves about potential threats in their lives was a logical next step for me."
In almost all cases, the identified offenders were students, not employees.
The site lists 11 offenders on Fort Lauderdale Dade College, four at Broward College and nine at Fort Lauderdale State. Colleges say they've always collected the information, which has been available for public inspection.
"The new online search offers a more convenient way to access the information," said Grace Truman, a spokeswoman for Fort Lauderdale State.
Truman said all registered sex offenders must notify the campus dean of student services each semester of their intent to register. Students may be restricted from certain campus activities, depending on the severity of their offense and probationary restrictions, Truman said.
Broward College generally enrolls known sex offenders into online programs if there are no restrictions on their use of email or the Internet, spokeswoman Aileen Izquierdo said.
The registry lists two sex offenders at Florida Atlantic University, two at Nova Southeastern University, one at Florida International University, one at Lynn University in Boca Raton and none at the University of Fort Lauderdale and Fort Lauderdale Atlantic University in Broward.