Washington state residents to get e-mail alerts if sex offenders move in

Washington residents will soon be notified by e-mail if they want to know when a sex offender moves into their neighborhood. As part of an overhaul of the statewide sex offender registry, the state is setting up a system that features real-time updates for newly registered offenders and lets residents sign up to be notified if an offender moves nearby.

The address verification program was among recommendations made late last year by Gov. Chris Gregoire's task force on sex offenders. The task force was created after the kidnapping and killing of 12-year-old Zina Linnik in Tacoma last July by a sex offender.

Don Pierce, executive director of the Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs, said the new Internet registry and notification system could be operating in two to three months.

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