Atlantic City police will track parolees within the city after it was found that several former inmates, including registered sex offenders, had been staying at a local motel.
State Parole Board numbers released to the city Thursday showed 22 paroled inmates were staying at the Sunset Inn at 1600 Absecon Blvd. Of those, 18 had been listed as residents before their incarceration. They are all now out of the city.
It has not been determined how long the parolees had been staying there or whether they had been placed there just one or two at a time, Police Chief Ernest Jubilee said.
“Right now, what I’m concerned about is we don’t find ourselves in that situation again,” he said. “The way they parole people is their policy.”
But now, Atlantic City will have its own policy to avoid the “clustering” of parolees in one spot, as was the case at the Sunset Inn.
“I am tasking our Intelligence Unit with tracking the location of local parolees, then they will share that information with the commanders on a regular basis,” Jubilee said.
He said he will first meet with the commanders to decide how often those check-ins should occur.
Mayor Lorenzo Langford told residents at a Venice Park Civic Association meeting Tuesday that he learned last week that 31 parolees were staying at the motel, including 17 Tier 1 sex offenders. Those numbers differed from the ones released to the city by Parole Board representatives Thursday. Ten are Tier 1 sex offenders, according to the Parole Board.
The motel is about a block from the Martin Luther King Jr. School Complex, which raised concerns among city and school officials and parents about unknowingly having sex offenders nearby.
But under Megan’s Law, notification is not required for Tier 1 offenders — considered the least likely to re-offend. They also are not listed on the online database.
Assemblyman Chris Brown, R-Atlantic, said he learned Friday that the ex-offenders were there, and that Parole Board Chairman Jim Plousis “acted quickly” as soon as he was contacted to remove them.
No information was released on where those parolees were sent. A Parole Board spokesman was trying to see what information could be released on that but was unable to do so before publication.
Public Safety Director Will Glass spoke with board representatives in a conference call Thursday and said work will be done to streamline how information is released, to make sure there are no gaps.
He and Jubilee both told City Council at Wednesday night’s meeting that they were unaware the parolees were at the motel.
“Now that we’re aware of what has happened in the past, we’re going to work diligently to make sure it doesn’t happen again,” Jubilee said.
In addition to tracking the parolees that come into the city, he said, they will remain in constant contact with Parole Board representatives.
City Council passed a resolution Wednesday night calling for a probe into what happened. That is ongoing.
“As far as where we end up at the end of the investigation, I don’t know,” Jubilee said. “Whether it’s public notifications or something else, I’ll better be able to address at another time.”
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