Disclosing to Employers
Sex offenders, regardless of the age of the victim, may not enter any school for elementary or secondary education, or any daycare facility. However, there are no residency restrictions for sex offenders; they may live near a school or day care facility if they choose, according to the Maryland Department of Public Safety.
Sex offenders are also able to work in a place of higher education, according to Brown.
"This prompts me to call that school to make them aware of that status," Brown said. "I go ahead and let them know where they can and cannot be."
Brown gave the example of Carroll County Community College, which has a daycare center in their college. Because of this, it has a blanket policy that does not allow sex offenders on the premise, whether they are going to college or attempting to become employed by the Carroll County Community College. A sex offender would have to go elsewhere in Carroll to receive or be employed by higher education, such as McDaniel College.
According to the sex offender registry, there are no sex offenders currently employed at McDaniel College.
"They have to completely disclose what employers they have, and if that employment takes them to another location," Ocampo said.
She gave the example of a construction company based in Carroll County but has a lot of jobs in Montgomery County. It's possible they would have to inform Montgomery County's police department of their status as well, Ocampo said.
Sex offenders are not required to tell their employers they are sex offenders. The exception to the rule, Ocampo said, is when a worker is contracted to do work in a school or daycare. A sex offender is then required to tell their employer, so the employer is liable.
"They can't just use the excuse of 'Oh my boss told me I have to do this job here,'" Ocampo said.
Brown said he calls the employers after a change of employment in order to confirm their hire date, and make sure the employer knows they are employing a sex offender. Those on the registry must let Brown know within three days of their hire date.
"Sometimes I find our registrants are somewhat lackadaisical and could be working there several weeks and then call to let me know," Brown said.
If a registrant disobeys the sex offender registry requirements, they are guilty of a misdemeanor on first offense, and guilty of a felony on a second offense, according to Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services.
If an employer were to run a background check on a sex offender, they would see a criminal history and the conviction, but would not specifically list if they are on the sex offender list. Employers will hear from Brown a few days after the hire date to let the employer know anyway.
"I find the majority of people on the registry don't want to violate any of the registry requirements, and don't want to violate the law period," Brown said. "Most of them are compliant just like in society. Most people in society obey most laws."