Riverhead wants sex offender trailer out of town

Riverhead officials want a mobile trailer that houses homeless sex offenders booted out of its community. The temporary home is located in the Riverhead Jail parking lot. Town officials want it moved

News 12 Staff

Oct 10, 2008, 3:57 AM

Updated 5,756 days ago

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Riverhead officials want a mobile trailer that houses homeless sex offenders booted out of its community.
The temporary home is located in the Riverhead Jail parking lot. Town officials want it moved near the county's other jail in Yaphank.
County officials say the Yaphank site is a no-go since there is a nearby soccer field, and sex offenders are forbidden by law from living within a quarter mile of it.
Riverhead Town Supervisor Phil Cardinale doesn't buy that explanation. Cardinale says the trailer is currently located within a quarter mile of George Smelzer Park in downtown Riverhead.
"Albeit, it's a small and a new park on the river, it is a park, so I think they should be concerned with compliance with that," says Cardinale.
Roland Hampson, of Suffolk County Social Services, doesn't accept that argument.
"That park is a postage stamp size park with two picnic tables and a garbage can," says Hampson. "The park was created after the trailer was installed in the jail."
Suffolk County is beefing up security at the trailer. A surrounding fence has been reinforced and a close circuit monitor will be installed inside the trailer.
Parents like Flanders resident Matt Brewer say it's not enough though.
"I have four children - I have a right to be scared," says Brewer. "They're sex offenders, and it's our children. It's only a matter of time before something happens and who's going to answer for that?"


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