Laws & Programs
In 1947, California implemented the nation’s first sex offender registration program to help track the whereabouts of persons convicted of specific sex crimes. The registration requirement is for life unless the offender is relieved of this responsibility through the legal process.
In 1996, California enacted Megan’s Law, which provides the public with photographs and descriptive information on serious sex offenders residing in California who have been convicted of committing sex crimes and are required to register their whereabouts with local law enforcement.
Obtaining Sex Offender Information
Sex offender information can easily be obtained by accessing the California Attorney General’s website. Simply follow the links to the Megan’s Law database and access will be granted to information on sex offender registrants anywhere in the State of California. Available information includes the registrant’s name, photograph, physical description, and sex offense committed. In some cases, the registrant’s address may be available.
Information on California’s serious and high-risk sex offenders is also available for public viewing at many police departments and sheriff’s stations, including the Brea Police Department. This direct connection to the state database provides the following information about serious and high-risk sex offenders:
- Registrant’s name
- Photograph (if available)
- Physical description, including scars, marks, and tattoos
- Registered sex offense
- County of residence and ZIP code (based on last registration)
To view this direct database connection, you must:
- Be 18 years of age or older
- Provide a California driver’s license or identification card
- Sign a statement that you are not a registered sex offender, that you understand the purpose of the release of information is for the public to protect themselves and their children from sex offenders, and that it is illegal to use the information to harass, discriminate, or commit a crime against any registrant.
Contact the Brea Police Department to obtain information on where and when you can view the database.
Use of Information
The release of this information to the public is meant to assure public protection, not to punish the offender. The information may not be used to harass or commit any crime against the offender. Public safety is best served when offenders are not concealing their location to avoid harassment.
Protecting Yourself & Your Family
Certain behaviors signal that you should be cautious in allowing an individual access to your children. Child molesters have well-developed techniques for luring victims. Generally, they are skilled at identifying vulnerable victims, are able to identify better with children than adults and can manipulate children, have methods for gaining access to children, participate in activities with children, often excluding other adults, seduce children with attention, affection, and gifts, have hobbies and interests appealing to children, and may show sexually explicit videos or pictures to children.
Teach your children to avoid situations that put them in danger of abuse, molestation, or abduction. Help protect your child by establishing a home environment where your child feels safe to tell you anything, without fear of shame, ridicule, or punishment. A safe and supportive home environment, combined with clear instructions about what behavior is acceptable and what is not, will guide your child’s actions and encourage your child to tell you if something improper happens.
Many parents warn their children not to talk to strangers. But more often than not, an abuser or abductor is known to the child. He or she can be a school bus driver, teacher, relative, neighbor, or family friend. Many times the molestation occurs in the home of the victim or the abuser.
It is best to teach your child to avoid certain situations or actions. Children should know from an early age that some behavior isn’t acceptable and that they have the right to tell an adult to leave them alone.
Here are some specific rules you can teach your child:
- Stay away from people who call you near their car, even if they offer to take you somewhere exciting.
- If someone tries to take you away, yell, "This person is not my father (or mother)" and scream.
- If you get lost in a store, find another mom with children or go to the checkout counter. Don’t wander around on your own.
- You don’t have to keep secrets from your parents. No one can hurt your parents or pets if you tell what happened.
- No one should touch you in the parts covered by your bathing suit and you should not be asked to touch anyone there.
- Don’t let anyone take your picture without permission from your parents or teacher.
- Arm yourself with information.
The 900 line and Megan’s Law CD-ROM are tools to protect you and your family. Sex Offender Identification Line can be reached by calling 900-463-0400. For more information, contact the Brea Police Department law enforcement agency, view the Attorney General's website, or write:
California Department of Justice
P.O. Box 944255
Sacramento, CA 94244-2550