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New Ohio law requires violent criminals to register where they live

Slain woman's mother supports Sierah's Law
Posted: 6:23 PM, Jan 01, 2019
Updated: 2019-01-01 22:31:25-05
Nickeisha_Holloman.jpg

CINCINNATI — People who commit violent crimes in Ohio will soon have 30 days to register with their local sheriff's office after they are released from prison.

A new law is designed to keep the public safe based on the idea that knowledge is power. But some say this registry will only make it harder for people who have served their time to re-enter society.

Keiana Rogers is in favor of the law. She thinks of her 23-year-old daughter Keisha Hollomon every day.

"It's been a very horrible, horrible loss," Rogers said.

Keisha’s remains were found in an empty lot in Mt. Airy in August. No one has been charged in her death.

"You don't think for a million years that you're going to bury your child. Your children are supposed to bury you," Rogers said.

That's why she's pleased with the passage of Sierah's Law, which creates a registry for violent offenders. It's named for a University of Toledo student kidnapped and killed by a man who'd been convicted of abduction.

"I think it's important for families to know where these people live, if they've been released," Rogers said.

But some argue that Sierah's Law isn't a solution.

"It's not giving us the outcomes we think we're getting," said Stephen JohnsonGrove, Deputy Director for Policy at the Ohio Justice and Policy Center

As an offender re-entry advocate, JohnsonGrove worries this will only turn people with criminal pasts into pariahs.

"The problem with these registries is they don't make it safer. They're really just a lot of political grandstanding that look good on paper and don't do much to make us safer,” JohnsonGrove said.

“What they do is trigger a lot of vigilante justice."

Still, families who have lost love ones say something has to change and they're hoping this will help.

"When someone is creating violent crime time after time after time, it's got to come to an end,” Rogers said. “How are we going to make up a process to stop this?"

The registry will only be available at the police station or sheriff's office and will not be published online, but anyone can go there and view it.