By Mark Treinen, USA TODAY NETWORK-Wisconsin
ALBAN - Another sexually violent offender is scheduled to be released in a rural Portage County town, three weeks after the sheriff complained the county had become a "dumping grounds" for child predators.
In his community notice of the offender's release, however, Portage County Sheriff Mike Lukas noted Friday that "sex offenders have always lived in our communities" and that "citizen abuse of this information to threaten, intimidate, or harass registered sex offenders will not be tolerated."
Gregory F. Loomis, 43, was convicted in 1988 and 1992 of sexually assaulting boys and girls he was babysitting, according to the Sheriff's Department. Online court records show that he was convicted in Milwaukee County.
In 1996, Loomis was committed to extended incarceration under the state's sexually violent persons law. A judge on March 16 ordered that Loomis be released on April 15 to live along State 49 in the town of Alban, where the homeowner has contracted with state officials to house supervised sex offenders.
Previous placement of sex offenders in that location stirred controversy among people in the town, who noted it was across the street from a community center. State Rep. Katrina Shankland of Stevens Point unsuccessfully pushed for a budget provision that would have blocked judges from placing such offenders outside their home counties.
Lukas was angry earlier this month when state officials tried to place a different sexually violent offender in the town of Lanark, in a home he believed was too close to children's common gathering areas but also too remote for deputies to respond quickly to any incidents. The property owner later withdrew an offer to house the offender.
"I am utterly disgusted with what's going on here in the state. This is unbelievable that Portage County has become the dumping grounds for sexually violent persons," Lukas said in an interview with USA TODAY NETWORK-Wisconsin, before that offender's release was halted.
Regarding Loomis' pending release in Alban, the sheriff said a community notification meeting will be held from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. April 4 at the Central Wisconsin Electric Coop, 10401 Lystul Road. Representatives from the sheriff's department, the county District Attorney's Office and various state agencies will present information about the relocation and supervision plan for Loomis.
Loomis will be on intensive supervision, subject to an electronic monitoring and tracking program, according to the sheriff. He will be registered for life as a sex offender, with public information available at www.widocoffenders.org.