CHARLOTTE, N.C. – It’s the meeting spot for thousands of kids every morning and every afternoon.
A place to finish up that homework assignment and catch up with classmates. The bus stop is supposed to be a safe place.
“But to know there’s a possibility a sex offender could be right there, that would scare the crap out of me,” said Keshia Sandridge.
Parents in one Charlotte neighborhood found out their kids were standing feet from the door of a registered sex offender’s house.
“I think it’s a concern and it’s certainly a concern for the parents who have those children at that bus stop,” said Union County Sheriff Eddie Cathey.
However, it is not illegal. North Carolina law states sex offenders are not allowed to live within 1,000 feet of a school or day care, but bus stops are not regulated.
NBC Charlotte reached out to Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools and requested officials cross-reference its bus stop locations to the addresses of registered sex offenders in the county.
CMS responded in part, “The transportation system, nor the school district is a law enforcement agency, thus is not designed to access or cross-reference private residential addresses of individuals throughout Mecklenburg County.”
They added they don’t have the resources.
“I think all parents who care about their kids should think about things like that because, I mean, like you just said, there’s a loophole that I didn’t even know about,” Sandridge said.
Law enforcement will routinely check on offenders.
“Any violation we certainly follow up and then we randomly check to see if they are where they are supposed to be,” Cathey said.
Parents can also access the North Carolina Sex Offender Registry by clicking this link.
“If you are found guilty of a sexual offense against a minor or against some other person, then as our laws are today, they have a right to know that in the community you live in, you’re just going to have to live with it,” Cathey said.
If you happen to know your child’s bus stop is in close proximity to a registered sex offender, you can request a bus stop change by clicking this link.