The Missouri Sheriffs’ Association is taking issue with a report made public last week by State Auditor Nicole Galloway that said the state had lost track of over 1,200 sex offenders. The MSA said the numbers don’t add up, calling the report a rush to judgment. Galloway, said it was unfortunate the Sheriffs’ Association decided to weigh in. She also says, however, her staff met with the head of the association to get information and input, but the MSA declined to provide any responses.
This contrasts with claims by the Executive Director of the MSA, Kevin Merritt, that he provided feedback to those involved with the audit. Merritt’s statement claims, Auditor Galloway failed with regard to due diligence in contacting local Sheriff’s Departments and considering their input for the report. Merritt wrote that he personally shared with the Audit Manager potential factors for low totals of outstanding warrants for non-compliant sex offenders, but they were ignored by the audit. Merritt also cites as examples within a single County, offenders currently in prison, passed away, under investigation prior to issuance of a warrant, or moved out of state and no longer required to register in Missouri.
Local sheriff’s Departments have expressed support for the MSA statement.