State Senator Troy Balderson (R-Zanesville) announced today the passage of legislation that will protect Ohio children from online sexual solicitation.

The legislation will require registered sex offenders to register all online accounts with the local sheriff’s department.

"The goal of this legislation is to ensure that we are doing everything we can to protect our children from the risks associated with online contact," said Balderson. "This will provide local law enforcement with the tools necessary to enforce violations and keep the general public safe and informed of offenders communicating online."

In the past, offenders who have not listed email addresses and social media accounts have used them to contact minors, and although the omission is illegal, it is not currently punishable. Senate Bill 184 will make such an omission a punishable criminal offense in order to further protect Ohio children from the dangers of online predation.

When a person changes or adds an internet identifier, they will be required to update the sheriff within three days.

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, 1 in 25 children have received an online sexual solicitation in which the solicitor tried to make offline contact.

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