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1,000 California Foster Care Homes Match Sex Offender Addresses: Report

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A new audit of the California foster care system has revealed that over 1,000 foster home addresses match those of registered sex offenders, according to the Los Angeles Times.

It seems that child welfare official failed to compare the addresses even after they were told to do so in 2008. According to the Sacramento Bee, about 600 of the highlighted offenders were considered high risk.

The matching addresses involved both foster care facilities and homes, according to the Sacramento Bee. At this point eight licenses have been revoked or suspended, and an additional 36 orders have been issued barring individuals from facilities.

According to the Fresno Bee, the investigation was spurred by the killing of a young boy in the foster care system.

Assembly Member Henry T. Perea requested the audit after children's deaths in Fresno County, including 10-year-old Seth Ireland who was beaten to death by his mother's boyfriend in 2008.

According to SacBee, the locations of the sex offenders have not been disclosed, but Sacramento, Fresno and Alameda counties were all targeted for the audit.

Los Angeles County was also selected for investigation, according to the LA Times, but the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors said no to subpoenas and later hired outside lawyers to fight the investigation. However, the auditor's office continues to press the county for information.

Last year, Kentucky performed a similar audit, but didn't find quite as many overlapping instances, according to The ChildLaw blog. In that case the audit only found 12 instances of sex offenders living with or caring for foster children.

UPDATE: The L.A. Times has since clarified that the matching addresses included more than just foster care homes and group facilities, but other state-run facilities as well.

In reality, the sex offender matches included a wider group of state-licensed facilities, including day-care facilities for children and providers for the elderly and adults with special needs. Additionally, the state auditor said that regulators issued 36 orders barring individuals from licensed facilities. The true number is 31, according to the California Department of Social Services.

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