HOULTON, Maine — An influx of complaints in the past year about convicted sex offenders who allegedly failed to provide current data about their location for the Maine Sex Offender Registry have led to charges against two men and warnings for several others, according to the Aroostook County Sheriff’s Department.
Darrell Crandall, chief deputy of the sheriff’s department, said Tuesday that his department helps investigate convicted sex offenders who fail to register with the Maine Sex Offender Registry, which is required by law. The Sex Offender Registry website is maintained by the Maine State Police, State Bureau of Identification in order to provide the public information concerning the location of registered offenders within the state. It was created in 1999 and is updated daily based upon registrations received from offenders.
Depending on the nature of the conviction, offenders are required to reregister every three or six months. If they do not, law enforcement is notified by the registry, according to the chief deputy. This is to ensure that all of the information on the registry remains up to date.
“There are offenders who purposely try to evade the registration process while others simply procrastinate,” said Crandall. Late last year into the start of this year, his office received 17 complaints from the registry of noncompliant, convicted sex offenders believed to be living in Aroostook County.
The chief deputy said that 12 offenders from throughout Aroostook County were located and issued warnings to come into compliance. Nine immediately obeyed the order, one successfully was granted relief from his duty to register, and one has moved to another state and registered there. Crandall added that another had moved to Presque Isle and the police department was notified, one moved out of state and the U.S. Marshal’s Service was notified and one is in jail. The final offender moved without leaving a forwarding address and deputies are seeking an arrest warrant for him.
The two offenders who failed to comply with the edict were Charles Goggin, 66, of Eagle Lake and Freemont Carver III, 37, of Sherman Mills. Both men were summoned to appear in court for failing to register, which is a misdemeanor charge.
Goggin is a lifetime registrant, having been convicted of unlawful sexual contact in Aroostook County Superior Court in Caribou in Dec. 1999, when he was living in Winterville. The victim was under 14 years old. He was sentenced to three years in prison with all but seven months suspended, followed by three years of probation and restitution of $236.
Carver is also a lifetime registrant, having been convicted in Aroostook County Superior Court in Caribou of gross sexual assault and unlawful sexual contact in June 1996. The victim was under age 14. He was sentenced to three years with all but six months suspended on the gross sexual assault charge, in concert with two years of probation, and 4 months in prison on the unlawful sexual contact charge.
Crandall said that tracking the registrants is an ongoing process for the department.
“This process begins all over again each time registration deadlines pass for offenders and they do not respond,” he said on Tuesday. “Deputies will track them down and they will either register or be charged with a crime.”