When AWOL sex offenders are nabbed for failing to register their location, they often go back to doing exactly what they did before being caught. They continue to not register.
A review of sex offenders files from the U.S. Marshals Service, the lead federal agency helping state and local cops locate the fugitives, shows that 1,400 offenders were arrested numerous times or for multiple outstanding warrants.
To be sure, many if not most sex offenders comply with the reporting requirements and residency restrictions a growing number of states are placing on the convicts.
But many don't, and a review of their arrest records highlights the slice of sex offenders who persistently evade law enforcement.
Take Donald Salavea, of Tacoma, Wash. As a teenager, Salavea sexually victimized his 8-year-old and 6-year-old male cousins multiple times, according to Pierce County (Wash.) Sheriff's records. To get the boys to comply with his sexual demands, Salavea would hit them, according to the records. Salavea threatened that if the boys told about the abuse, he would kill them and their families.
In 1999, a Washington state court convicted Salavea of two counts of child rape and molestation of a child, according to sheriff's records. Salavea also has a criminal history of theft, assault and possession of a firearm.
Since 2008, Salavea has been arrested at least three times for failing to register as a sex offender, including this January, according to the Marshals Service . Salavea, now 25, continues to be a noncompliant sex offender, according to records from the Pierce County Sheriff's office, which is soliciting information on Salavea's whereabouts.
And he is considered to be at high risk of committing another sex offense, according to the sheriff's office.
One of the difficulties facing sex offenders and law enforcement is how to deal with homelessness. Since Austin Wynn was convicted of having oral sex with a minor, the California man has been arrested six times since 2007, according to the USMS. He remains a transient, according to California.
Many suspected sex offenders flee before they're convicted. In 1998, Pastor Kenneth Craig was charged with six sex crimes against children, according to the Marshals Service. He was arrested in November 1998 in a Deerfield Beech, Fla. motel room with two minor boys. Investigators found dozens of tapes of his exploits with other children, according to the Marshals.
Before moving to Florida, Craig had been arrested in Baton Rogue, La. in the early 1990s for molesting a child. Craig, who had children call him the "boss," spoiled his victims with presents and plied them with liquor.
After his arrest, Craig fled to Brazil in 1999, and American authorities located him in Rio De Janeiro in 2008. But in February, as authorities were awaiting Craig's extradition to the U.S., he was released from Brazilian custody and disappeared.
(E-mail reporter Isaac Wolf at wolfi(at)shns.com)
(Distributed by Scripps Howard News Service, http://www.scrippsnews.com)