Gordon County Sheriff Mitch Ralston had to add a second deputy sheriff to Sex Offender Registry duties. Current state law (OCGA 42-1-12) requires each Georgia sheriff to monitor sex offenders who reside and/or work in their respective counties.
When Sheriff Ralston took office in 2009, there were 110 registered sex offenders in Gordon County. By 2018, that number has doubled to over 200. In what is known as an “unfunded mandate”, the state government requires the individual county sheriffs to monitor and supervise sex offenders in their own jurisdictions. The county government bears all the costs associated with the sheriff’s offices in fulfilling these duties. Sex Offenders are classified under three levels: Level I, Low Risk; Level II, Medium Risk; and Level III, the most serious, are classified as “predators”. The deputy recently assigned had to be taken from enforcement duties, and does not involve a new position.