Feds say 37 sex offenders arrested in Washington County sting
A joint federal, state and local law enforcement operation resulted in the arrest of 37 sex offenders in Washington County from July to September this year, the U.S. Marshals Service announced late Wednesday, Oct. 9.
"Operation Oregon Trail 3," as the enforcement push was codenamed, targeted registered sex offenders in two Oregon counties who are classified as "high-risk" or were suspected of not complying with state and federal requirements, as well as those with active warrants for their arrest.
Law enforcement officers reported that they conducted 658 "compliance checks" of sex offenders in Washington County alone, verifying that they're following the legal requirements for people on the sex offender registry. Of them, 37 were arrested.
The operation also included Lane County, where 127 compliance checks were made and 15 sex offenders were arrested, according to officials.
Outside of Washington and Lane counties, hundreds of other sex offenders were also investigated, and compliance checks in some of those cases also led to arrests, officials said. The U.S. Marshals Service did not announce how many arrests were made of sex offenders elsewhere in Oregon as part of the operation.
Not all violators faced immediate arrest, said U.S. Marshals.
"When appropriate, operation personnel also issued verbal warnings as well as criminal citations in lieu of custody," the agency stated in a press release Wednesday.
U.S. Marshals said targets of the operation were investigated for both state and federal violations.
In Oregon, sex offenders are required to report when they move to a new address, change jobs or schools, or enroll in a higher education or vocational training program. They must also report to their local agencies upon being required to register as a sex offender, and they are required to submit an annual report to authorities to verify that they are complying with the law.
Federal law requires sex offenders to re-register after moving across state lines and to register before traveling internationally.
Partners in the operation included U.S. Marshals, Oregon State Police, the Washington County Sheriff's Office, and the Coburg Police Department in Lane County, among other law enforcement agencies.
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