Laguna Hills' City Council granted final approval Tuesday evening for the latest in several ordinances being passed statewide that restricts sex offenders from visiting certain locations.
Registered sex offenders will be banned from the Orange County city’s 15 parks, and pending homeowner association enforcement, 15 private parks.
La Habra, Lake Forest, Los Alamitos, Huntington Beach, Westminster and Yorba Linda have passed similar bans, the OC Register reported. Irvine also passed an ordinance; however, it is geared exclusively toward sex offenders that have targeted children.
Los Angeles County took a broader, less stringent approach in 2009 to address fears of child safety endangerment with the passage of an anti-loitering law that prohibited sex offenders from coming within 300 feet of “child safety zones.”
But as of late, cities and counties have begun to pass more restrictive and specific laws.
Riverside County, for example, prohibited sex offenders from handing out candy or displaying Halloween decorations during trick-or-treating hours this year.
“If you’re a sexual predator, Riverside County is not going to be friendly toward you,” said Riverside County Supervisor Jeff Stone.
The Laguna Hills ordinance piggybacks off of a law unanimously approved by Orange County supervisors in April banning registered sex offenders from entering county beaches, parks and harbors.
“Basically what this does is, we don’t have to wait for [sex offenders] to do something criminal, something wrong,” Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackauckas told NBC4 in a past interview. “It is a crime for registered sex offenders to be there in the first place.”
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The Laguna Hills law is set to go into effect Jan. 12.