KATONAH, N.Y. (CBS 2) — He’s a convicted child sex offender, out of prison and back in his old neighborhood. In an exclusive interview, he told CBS 2’s Lou Young he’s a threat to no one.
But parents are furious and they’re worried about the potential danger next door.
“I can’t drive. I’m restricted where I can go. I’m on a GPS ankle monitor. I have to report every time I move. I have a cell phone. I have to call my parole officer every time I move. They are watching me. I’m restricted in what I can do and where I can go,” David Ohnmacht said.
He’s served his prison time and is on parole, but his presence in his old neighborhood is causing anxiety for his neighbors who believe wherever he ends up, it should be away from their children.
“We have to deal with this potential monster every day so it’s at the front of our thoughts. There have to be at least 40 children up and down this road,” neighbor Mike Toscano said.
Ohnmacht’s arrest in 2002 electrified this community. He was 22 at the time and his victims were girls between the ages of 13 and 15.
“He would take digital photographs of the girls as he molested them, asking the girls, who are 12 and 13 years of age, if they would take pictures of children, of whom they were babysitting, naked in a bathtub,” then-Westchester County District Attorney Jeannine Pirro said back in October of 2002.
State Assemblyman Robert Castelli has been pushing a bill that would prevent sex offenders like Ohnmacht from ever living within 1,000 yards of a house with children.
“Some of these individuals operate out of a forcible psychological compulsion. I, for one, actually worry about that as being an added level stimulus that will not allow them to self-discipline even when they’re trying,” the Republican lawmaker said.
For his part, Ohnmacht said no one should fear him.
“I did a lot of stuff inside. I did a lot of work inside, the treatment programs, worked with the New York State Department of Mental Health for nine years,” Ohnmacht said.
It is more a gamble than the parents on the block are willing to accept even if they admit the answer isn’t easy.
“If he’s not allowed to live here where does he go? So he potentially goes to another community that doesn’t want him as well and doesn’t know who he is,” Toscano said.
The best they can do at this point is be wary and warn their children.
In addition to the restrictions he mentioned, Ohnmacht is also forbidden to own a computer or access the Internet. His probation will last for another five years.
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