Convicted Sex Offender Ordered To Live In Hotel Near Children
A convicted sex offender was told to live next door to children. It's exactly the kind of place a judge ordered him to stay away from. Local reporters investigated why the state sent him there. Richard Reynolds was convicted of criminal sexual conduct involving a child. He served his time and was released from prison in April. If offenders like Reynolds have no place to go when they are released, the state provides temporary housing. A Pine County motel was where the Department of Corrections put Reynolds. He said there were children staying there. On the television, Reynolds had access to pornography. Reporters asked Reynolds about the formal order of the judge, which said no kids, no pornography. "Yes, it didn't make sense, it was a set up," said Reynolds. Reynolds claimed he never watched the porn, but he told his probation officer it was part of the in-room television service. Reynolds said he also mentioned the children. "That is where the kids were the whole time, right across the hall from me, they would play on the same deck as I had to walk up to get to my room right were the kids were," said Reynolds.Within days, Reynolds was sent back to prison, for violating his parole. The Department of Correction said policy does not allow them to speak about the specifics of the case, but they did say Reynolds is one of a dozen released offenders sent to the Chalet Motel. In fact, the DOC had a contract running two years at the motel for two rooms. The DOC currently has contracts with two other motels, but they told reporters that state law forbids them from saying where they are, or who is staying there. "That is where the kids were the whole time, right across the hall from me, they would play on the same deck as I had to walk up to get to my room right were the kids were," said Reynolds. Reynolds was never accused of trying to approach any of the children at the motel, none of whom he knew. Reynolds will be released from prison in January, nine months after he was arrested for supposedly violating his parole. "It is messed up. It seriously is," Reynolds said. The manager of the motel told reporters that offenders were housed in a separate building where they shouldn't have been able to access pornography. Corrections said Reynolds brought in his own television. The Chalet Motel has since canceled its contract with the Department of Corrections.