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While children gear up for a Halloween night filled with candy and fun, Howard police are also preparing for Thursday evening by offering safety tips for parents and residents.

Police have prepared for trick-or-treating by conducting a compliance check of all registered sex offenders in the county.

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Howard detectives have accounted for all 109 registered county sex offenders and “all are in compliance with reporting requirements of the registry,” a Wednesday news release states. Parents can check the Maryland Sex Offender Registry linked on the police department’s home page to reference when mapping out trick-or-treat routes

“The goal of the sweep was to identify anyone in violation and to remind registered sex offenders that they are discouraged from participating in trick-or-treating,” the release states.

Police will be alert for theft, vandalism, destruction of property and drunk or impaired drivers. Speed enforcement activities will also be in place.

Safety tips

  • Encourage children to trick-or-treat before dark and go with a group. When it becomes night, an adult chaperone should choose well-lit streets and carry a flashlight.
  • Children’s costumes should be short, snug, flame retardant, and either be light-colored or children should wear reflective tape and should avoid masks that obstruct vision.
  • Children should be taught to never go inside a stranger’s home or car.
  • Never eat opened candy and all treats should be inspected by parents.
  • Children should not take shortcuts through alleys, backyards or playing fields.
  • Parents/guardians should not let children approach dark/non-lit homes.
  • Drivers should drive slow and be vigilant.
  • If handing out candy, residents should have outside lights on and remove any objects that could be hazardous.
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