A judge in Washington state is deciding whether the public has access to detailed records of low-level sex offenders.
The Tri-City Herald reports that Judge Bruce Spanner heard arguments during a hearing Friday in Benton County Superior Court. A Mesa woman has requested copies of records that include names, birthdays, phone numbers, pictures and other information for Level 1 sex offenders.
Level 1 sex offenders are considered the least likely to reoffend. Law enforcement agencies regularly post the information about Level 2 and 3 sex offenders online.
The woman seeking the records says people have the right to know about convicted sex offenders in their area. Lawyers on the other side argue that the sex offenders will face harm if the files are released. They also argue that the records are investigative files and exempt from public disclosure.