Arizona GIS watches for sex offenders

Arizona's Public Safety Department is making it easier for residents to know where convicted sex offenders live.

Since January 2000 the sex offender Web site, at www.azsexoffender.org, has built up to an average of 30,000 hits each month, supervisor Val Biebrich said.

Using geographic information system tools from MapInfo Corp. of Troy, N.Y., citizens enter an address'home, school or day care center'and in seconds see a hyperlinked list of convicted sex offenders' addresses.

Clicking on one brings up a page of information including offenses, a color JPEG photo and a neighborhood map. Only the more high-risk offenders are required by Arizona's version of Megan's Law to appear on the site.

Updated daily, the site uses IBM Corp.'s DB2 database, NetFinity Web server and Websphere application server. Visitors can click to view more detail or zoom out to a three-mile diameter

About the Author

Trudy Walsh is a senior writer for GCN.

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