In fact, the consensus of modern scientific research is that public registries do not reduce crime, and may actually increase sex offending. All people with records, including individuals convicted of sex offenses, are less likely to recidivate when they have strong family and community support, stable housing, educational opportunities, and good jobs.
By far the greatest danger of sexual abuse of children is not from strangers, but rather from relatives, sitters, friends, etc. In other words, the great majority of sex crimes are committed by new offenders, not repeat offenders. The risk of a new first sex offense is about 3 percent in the general male population.
The risk that someone will commit a new sex offense varies significantly among offenders. Most people convicted of sex offenses do not reoffend sexually. Even medium-to-high risk offenders become less likely to offend than the baseline over time. Individuals who reoffend usually do so within three-to-five years.
The graph below shows how the recidivism rates of offenders at different risk levels compare to the baseline risk of non-sex offenders. School exclusions zones apply to all registrants, even to those whose crime had nothing to do with children and who have never been found to be a danger to children. A study by the Prison Policy Initiative found that almost 50 percent of Grand Rapids is off-limits to registrants and much of the other 50 percent contains non-residential areas.
See the map below. Department of Justice recommends against offender exclusion zones because the zones do not reduce crime: In fact, studies have revealed that proximity to schools and other places where children congregate had little relation to where offenders met child victims. It is also impossible to know where exclusion zones are because the size and shape of the zone depends on whether you measure from the school door, the school building, or the school property line.
As the image below shows, the size and shape of exclusion zones depends on how you measure them. Because registrants and law enforcement officials have no way of knowing where property lines are, they cannot know where exclusion zones begin and end. This is why the federal district court held the exclusion zones to be unconstitutionally vague.
Changing Exclusion Zones Depending on How You Measure foot geographic zones drawn around each of three nested protected areas: