Polk deputies warn criminals, sex offenders not welcome at hurricane shelters

Posted September 08, 2017

The sheriff's office took to social media to warn sex offenders that LEOs will be checking IDs at each shelter door.

In the tweets, Judd said sex offenders would not be allowed at the shelters.

The sheriff's office said it will be checking IDs at every shelter.

Judd said the motivation behind the policy is to keep those gathered in the shelters safe.

'We hope it actually leads to more people turning themselves in, ' the spokeswoman, Carrie Horstman, told the paper. "You should turn yourself in and be safe in our jail rather than risk your life waiting out a storm".

A Florida sheriff is defending a controversial warning issued ahead of Hurricane Irma's arrival.

The second tweet received over one thousand replies, many of which were critical of the Sheriff' Grady Judd's pronouncement. The Category 5 storm with near record-breaking wind speeds in excess of 180 miles per hour is expected to hit Florida this weekend, but its precise track is still being determined, according to the Washington Post. He also stated sheriff's deputies would escort anyone with a warrant to the Polk County Jail.

According to Business Insider, Judd is popular in Polk County and has made a name for himself by combating pedophilia. The article said Horstman authored the tweets on behalf of the sheriff's office.

Polk County, between Orlando and Tampa, is home to about 600,000 people. Or, say, undocumented immigrants, of whom there are 450,000 living just in South Florida.

It was only weeks ago that another hurricane - this one bound for Texas - stoked fears about who would be allowed into emergency shelters. As does whether or not there'll be a Polk County left when Irma is done with it.

"If somebody could possibly injure my child and I was in a shelter, I wouldn't want them around my kid", she said.