State Law Does Not Prevent Sex Offenders From Living With Children

Thursday, April 14th 2011, 10:36 pm
By: News 9

Adrianna Iwasinksi, News 9

OKLAHOMA CITY -- The laws that are supposed to be protecting children from convicted sex offenders may not be going as far as many think. State law prevents them from living near schools and churches, but does not prevent them from living with kids.

A lifetime registered sex offender, Ronald Gene Lewis, was arrested Friday. He's accused of raping a young family member and was living with his girlfriend and her young grandchildren at the time.

According to a police report, a 13-year-old girl said Ronald Lewis would bring her and her brother to his trailer and then have her walk the short distance to another trailer next door and the teen said that's where the rapes occurred and they'd been going on for years.

"You don't do children that way," said Lewis' girlfriend and her adult daughter who asked not to be identified.

The news of Ronald Lewis's arrest and criminal past came as a shock to them, especially when they allowed three children to live with him in a travel trailer so they could attend the nearby school.

"If I had any idea of everything that had went on in his past, he would never have been allowed around my grandchildren. Or me," one of the women said.

They say had they known, they would have never allowed their children around the lifetime registered sex offender.

"I knew of one count and he told me it was bogus," she said. "I am in shock. I'm hurt, I'm more mad than furious because I allowed my children around him."

When News 9 looked into why a lifetime registered sex offender was even allowed to live inside a home with young children, it was discovered there was no law preventing them from doing so.

"If they've completed their sentence and their no longer under supervision there's nothing in the sex offender registration act that prohibits that," said Jerry Massie with the Department of Corrections.

The district attorney's office said the courts can impose special conditions for sex offenders when the crime involves children, but it's entirely up to a judge.

Lewis' girlfriend, she said she feels stupid and betrayed.

"He betrayed my trust and I don't trust anyone anymore," she said.

And according to the DOC sex offender registry, Lewis is listed as a level three lifetime registered sex offender and spent time in prison two separate times, both for lewd acts with children.

Lewis is currently being held in the Oklahoma County jail on $400,000 bond.