Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Paul Stockfold - Repeat Sex Offender stalked kids at beach

An incident involving a registered sex offender with a history in Warren lead to the Aug. 18 arrest and something Attorney General Patrick Lynch said "spotlights the wisdom of Rhode Island’s existing law regarding violations of probation."

According to DEM Police and Narragansett Police, Paul Stockfold, 42, now a Cranston resident, allegedly approached a 13-year-old girl and her 12-year-old friend who were walking along the water’s edge of Scarborough Beach and then asked them if they would take his bathing suit off. When they said no, the man asked if they would take their bathing suits off. They said no and ran back toward the 13-year-old’s mother, who promptly called the police. The girls later identified the man, who turned out to be Mr. Stockford, as he was being questioned by DEM Police on the beach.

On Wednesday, Aug. 19, Washington County Superior Court Judge Edwin J. Gale ordered Mr. Stockford held without bail pending an Aug. 26 determination of attorney conference and a Sept. 2 violation hearing.

Mr. Stockford has been charged with at least three sexual offenses in Massachusetts since 1993. He also was charged with failing to properly register as a sex offender when he moved to Warren from Pawtucket in 2007.

Mr. Stockford was arrested by Warren police in August 2007 after police in Seekonk said he exposed himself to a six-year-old girl at a Lowe’s home improvement store in that town. At the time, Warren police didn’t know he was a sex offender, and didn’t know he was living in Warren until being alerted by Seekonk police.

At the time, Seekonk police got involved after employees at the Lowe’s superstore on Route 6 called to report a man who had exposed himself to a young girl in the store’s lighting section and employees jotted down his license plate number. Seekonk then issued a warrant for Mr. Stockford’s arrest on a charge of felony open and gross lewdness, subsequent offense, since he been arrested on the same charge earlier.

Under state law, all convicted sex offenders in Rhode Island must register with the police departments in the towns in which they live. According to Warren Police Sgt. Roy Borges, Mr. Stockford was previously registered as an offender in Pawtucket but failed to notify Warren police. All offenders are classified by the state as having a low, moderate or high risk of re-offending and are assigned a risk level 1, 2, or 3 based on their perceived threat and the severity of the crime.

"25% of all sex offenders re-offend within 15 years"
.........Sarah Tofte

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