KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) – When families are out trick-or-treating, law enforcement’s goal: safety.
Operation Blackout is a Tennessee Department of Corrections statewide sex offender compliance sweep. The goal of the program is to increase safety of children on Halloween.Read More: 17 Knox County sex offenders arrested
TDOC imposes strict guidelines leading up to and on Halloween. Throughout the state, hundreds of TDOC probation parole officers work with local law enforcement to run checks in communities, including random visits and compliance checks.
Parents out trick-or-treating say they want to keep their kids safe through their candy, crossing the street, and even, where they get the candy from.
“Checking the candy… kidnapping… you don’t want to think that but,” said Adriana Mayes, a parent.
Mayes says she has a background working in corrections and knows that Halloween is a time where departments take extra precautions regarding sex offenders.
“Yeah it comes to mind because you wonder – what if they’re flipping on their light and they’re not supposed to?” said Mayes.
In Knoxville, these checks happen on Halloween and in conjunction with checks that happen year-round.
Seasonal restrictions for sex offenders include:
- Remaining in their homes between the hours of 6:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m.
- Keeping porch lights off.
- Not opening the door for trick-or-treating, only opening the door for law enforcement.
- No displays of fall decorations.
- No costumes or disguises.
- Not allowed to attend fall festivals or costume parties.