BENTON COUNTY, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — Benton County arrested 45 sex offenders during a recent compliance operation.
The operation took place over 3 days in August and involved multiple law enforcement agencies. Prosecuting Attorney Nathan Smith said there are approximately 500 registered sex offenders in the county.
“My hope is that registered sex offenders living here should expect more routine and more random checks, more contact with law enforcement and more folks checking up on them even more than we’ve been able to do in the past,” Smith said.
During the operation, law enforcement officers were able to make contact with 266 sex offenders. From that contact, 45 arrests were made and 26 devices were seized along with 8 firearms.
“The message to the community is one of reassurance that their local law enforcement officials put effort, manpower, time and money into this,” Smith said.
Some of the charges that were filed against the sex offenders include failure to register, felon in possession and possession of drugs.
Smith said its all about being proactive to ensure the safety of the community.
“We have to be intentional about what we’re emphasizing clearly, there’s nothing more important than the safety of our community, especially our children,” Smith said.
Although law enforcement officials weren’t able to make contact with every sex offender on their list, multiple federal investigations were opened as a result of the operation.