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February 22, 2012 07:35 PM

Parents Worry Sex Offender Is Moving By School

sioux falls, sd


A convicted sex offender moving near a school has parents upset Wednesday evening.


Ed Morris was released from prison yesterday after serving a 10-year sentence for raping a Spink County woman. He has moved into Sioux Falls and set up residence at a shelter not far from Whittier Middle School.
Morris is a convicted sex offender, and must live 500 feet away from a school. Sioux Falls police say the shelter he will be living in is far enough away from the school, but that doesn't make the news any easier for parents to take.

“Anything can happen. Especially in a high traffic area where young people are,” Jim Lohr said.

And that has parents worried. Most already knew Morris moved in just a few blocks away.

“I don't usually stay over in this area. When I do come down, I have the doors locked and everything else,” Sammie Steen said.

Parents are worried about warnings from authorities that Morris has a high likelihood to offend again, and that his victim history includes children and vulnerable adults.

Morris was released yesterday. Parents say it seemed like more police were patrolling Whittier Middle School Wednesday.

“You're not going to let em walk when maybe you would. If you don't have to you're not gonna,” Lohr said.

And ask anyone here picking up their children what they'd like to see moving forward, they'll tell you more police patrols are not the only answer. It's up to everyone.

“Have more teachers and adults outside while kids are coming out,” Steen said.

In 2000, Morris was charged with raping a woman in Redfield. He was a ward of the state, under the custody of the Department of Social Services. Three years prior to that crime, he was accused of sexual contact with a child, but was declared incompetent to stand trial.
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