OCEAN CITY – The Ocean City Police Department (OCPD) has another weapon in its arsenal when it comes to tracking registered sex offenders and known violent criminals in the resort on any given day in the summer.
OCPD Chief Bernadette DiPino on Monday met with officials from the Governor’s Office of Crime Control and Prevention to formalize a new partnership that will allow the local police department to better monitor the movement and activity of both registered sex offenders and violent criminals. Under the partnership, the OCPD will work directly with the governor’s office and the state’s Department of Parole and Probation to track the whereabouts of known offenders who might be in the area.
Using advanced crime analysis, the OCPD will be able to monitor registered sex offenders and known violent criminals when they travel to the resort. Registered sex offenders who already live in Ocean City or are in the resort for vacation, are now required to check in with Parole and Probation officials at the Public Safety Building on 65th Street.
Local officials will also track violent criminals and their movements to better prepare local law enforcement officials to deal with the offenders. The program will advise the OCPD of the presence of violent criminals in the resort area and alert the department the moment any new warrants are issued for them.
The new partnership was praised by the governor’s office for the increased surveillance and tracking of registered sex offenders and known violent offenders it provides to Ocean City, which becomes the state’s second largest city in the summer.
“This Comstat on Demand program will be utilized to develop data-driven crime analysis to better allocate state and local resources,” said Kristen Mahoney, executive director of the Governor’s Office of Crime Control and Prevention.
DiPino stressed the importance of the new partnership with the governor’s office.
“Being able to monitor the movement and activities of these offenders will certainly increase our ability to prevent crime and keep our residents and visitors safe,” she said this week.
Having a working relationship with state agencies also provides local officers the opportunity to immediately notify the agency of problems the department has with their clients, thereby causing an agent to request an immediate violation of probation warrant be issued. For the record, there are currently 17 known sex offenders living in Ocean City.