20 turn out for offender notification
Nancy and John Anderson were concerned when a high-risk sex offender moved into their north Fargo neighborhood two weeks ago. They worried about the safety of their 12-year-old daughter, other neighborhood children and students at nearby Horace M...
Nancy and John Anderson were concerned when a high-risk sex offender moved into their north Fargo neighborhood two weeks ago.
They worried about the safety of their 12-year-old daughter, other neighborhood children and students at nearby Horace Mann Elementary school.
So when the Fargo Police Department announced a notification meeting for Anthony Steven Larry, 33, a high-risk offender living a block away from them, the Andersons came prepared with plenty of questions and an open mind.
"If you're aware of what they look like and where they live, you have a mental picture," John Anderson said. "You are better prepared to say, 'Hey, this isn't right' and make a call to Fargo police."
Larry notified police that he moved into an apartment at 739 3rd St. N. on April 20, Lt. Tod Dahle said.
His criminal record includes two sex-related convictions. In 1993, he was convicted in Clay County of having sexual contact with a 15-year-old girl.
A year later, he was convicted of gross sexual imposition in Cass County against a 14-year-old girl he knew.
Larry, who did not attend Wednesday's meeting has a history of not registering as a sex offender, which he must do for the rest of his life, Dahle said.
Larry's failure to register plays a significant part in his high-risk status, Dahle added.
He spent 90 days in jail for failing to register in 2001. Two years later, he pleaded guilty to the same offense in Cass County Court and received a nine-month sentence.
In 2004, Larry was arrested for violating his probation. At the time, he was also wanted in Burleigh County for failing to register.
A state panel assessed him as a high-risk offender - the classification they give to those most likely to re-offend.
About 20 people attended Wednesday's meeting hosted by Dahle, who spoke about classifying sex offenders, police involvement in tracking them and what residents can do to stay informed.
Only five of the roughly 140 sex offenders living in Fargo are at high risk to re-offend, Dahle said.
Larry is one of them.
Police passed out flyers to residents living near Larry a few weeks ago, Dahle said. Nearby schools nearby were also notified of his relocation, Dahle added.
Police visit sex offenders three times per year and hold community notification meetings for high-risk offenders.
The department's Web site profiles moderate- to high-risk offenders and includes a map of where they live.
Residents can also sign up for police e-mail alerts that include information on when sex offenders relocate to Fargo or if they change addresses.
Readers can reach Forum reporter Joe Whetham at (701) 241-5557