Level-three sex offender moves to Newcastle

June 3, 2010

By Tim Pfarr

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Level 3 sex offender Joseph Pershing Hemmert has moved to the 7000 block of 122nd Avenue Southeast, about four blocks east of Renton Academy off Newcastle Way, according to the King County Sheriff’s Office. Level 3 sex offender offenders are considered most likely to re-offend.

An open house was held May 20 at City Hall to notify the community about Hemmert.

Joseph Hmmert

Hemmert, now under 24-hour supervision, was convicted of indecent liberties in 1965 after molesting an 8-year-boy at a roller skating rink, and he was convicted of indecent liberties once again in 1970 after luring two female minors away from a store and molesting them.

For these offenses, Hemmert served sentences of three years and two years in prison, respectively.

Finally, he was convicted of first-degree child molestation in 1990 after molesting two 7-year-old boys and a 6-year-old girl.

He served three years in prison for that offense.

Detective Wendy Billingsley, from the sheriff’s office, attended the May 4 City Council meeting to address the issue, and she said Hemmert has likely offended additional times but was not convicted. She also said Hemmert has been classified as a Level 3 offender because he cannot control himself around children.

Hemmert is not subject to Washington’s three strikes rule that was adopted in 1993, because his offenses preceded the law’s adoption.

Police Chief Melinda Irvine said local residents should keep an eye out for Hemmert during times when children are around, and she encouraged any suspicious activity be reported to the King County Sheriff’s Office’s sex offender hotline at 206-205-7948.

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