ROSEVILLE (CBS13) — A Roseville community is outraged that a sex offender has been living on their street. Even though he now is behind bars, police say there’s no guarantee that another sex offender won’t move into the neighborhood.
“I saved up to buy a house in a safe neighborhood and I don’t feel safe in my own neighborhood,” said Allie Steinmuller, who lives in Roseville.
Neighbors met with city leaders and Roseville police Tuesday night to get answers about what they can do to stop sex offenders from moving in in the future.
“Every single day, I’ve been afraid to go in my backyard,” said Debra Maginn, who lives in Roseville.
Back in 2014, William Robert Stephenson moved into a house on Champagne Street in Roseville. He was placed there by Liberty Healthcare, under its conditional release program. But earlier this month, the 60-year-old was arrested for possession of child pornography.
“There was absolute relief,” said Bonnie Gore, Vice Mayor of the city of Roseville.
“This individual will not be returning to the residence in Roseville,” said Alan Stillman, a spokesperson for Liberty Healthcare. “The department has no plans to continue leasing the property where he was residing.”
He also told the crowd that no one in the community was a victim of a crime, which was big relief for some who have been scared in their own homes. Others say they’re still worried that another sex offender could move into their neighborhood in the future.
“In terms of ensuring that nobody that with this type of history moves in, our hands are tied in a lot of ways,” said Daniel Hahn, Roseville Police Department’s Police Chief. “But what we can do is keep our communities engaged.”
Right now, Hahn says law enforcement has to follow Jessica’s law, which says sex offenders must live 2,000 feet away from schools and parks. But these neighbors want the law to consider residential areas too.
They should not be allowed to be in our neighborhoods where we have kids and children and families,” Gore said.
In the meantime, Maginn says she has an attorney and her battle is far from over.
“I’m absolutely going to pursue this further to make sure that doesn’t happen anywhere else,” said Debra Maginn, who lives in the neighborhood. “It just can’t.”
Neighbors say they plan to take the issue to the state legislature to include residential areas on the list of places where sex offenders cannot live. Meanwhile, the neighbors are making plans to build a park or daycare nearby so that no sex offenders can move into the area in the future.