New analysis found nine sex offenders residing in Bronx family shelters, endangering the welfare of vulnerable children
Bronx, NY - Senator Jeff Klein, Assemblymen Michael Benedetto and Mark Gjonaj joined community leaders outside Crystal’s Place family shelter on Saturday, calling on the city to immediately remove sex offenders from all family shelters.
“To ensure the safety of our children, I’ve passed legislation that restricts high-level sex offenders from living within 1,000 feet from a school. It’s unthinkable that the same sexual predators are able to coexist with the vulnerable children living inside the city’s family shelters. The city should immediately remove all sex offenders from these shelters, and when I get back to Albany I will continue to fight to prevent this from happening in the first place,” said Senator Jeff Klein.
“It is hard to believe that the city still hasn't got their act together on this matter. Children are being placed at risk. January can't come fast enough so we can begin to address this problem legislatively,” said Assemblyman Michael Benedetto.
“It’s unfathomable that sex offenders continue to find their way inside family shelters across our city. This practice needs to end now to ensure our city’s most vulnerable children have a safe living environment,” said Assemblyman Gjonaj.
A recent analysis completed by Senator Klein’s office revealed a total of nine high-level sex offenders living at separate Bronx family shelters, up from three sex offenders found in a 2015 study. One of the nine was removed from Crystal’s Place shelter late Thursday.
The Level 2 and 3 offenders committed offenses including sexual abuse, sodomoy and rape. Their victims ranged in age from 6 to 15-years-old. Senator Klein’s office is actively working on a citywide study to determine the amount of sex offenders residing in family shelters across all five boroughs. Those finding will be released shortly.
Senator Klein carries legislation that would ban Level 2 or 3 sex offenders from living in any temporary emergency housing or homeless shelters used to house families with children. This legislation would require municipalities to place homeless Level 2 and Level 3 sex offenders in adult-only shelters or emergency housing where they will not be in close contact with children.