Police Arrest Sex Offender Sunday at St. Alexander

| September 26, 2010

Police arrested a registered sex offender at St. Alexander Church's Sunday Mass after a parent noticed the man among the worshipers.

Anthony J. Olszowka, 38, of the 13600 block of South Howe Drive in Orland Park, was inside the Palos Heights church but outside of the sanctuary when police took him into custody on Sept. 19, police said.

The same main entrance is used for both the church and St. Alexander Elementary School, and that was grounds for arrest, police said.

Olszowka is charged with unlawful presence within a school zone.

"At no time were any kids harmed," said Palos Heights police Detective Gerard Wodka.

Olszowka was convicted of two counts of indecent solicitation of a child and one count of aggravated criminal sexual assault about 14 years ago, according to the Illinois State Police.

His victim was 12 years old, according to the State Police sex offender registry.

Olszowka's sex crime conviction compels him to notify the school principal if he is going to enter the school building, Wodka said.

The Illinois statute that outlines restrictions on sex offenders states that, "It is unlawful for a child sex offender to knowingly be present in any school building, on real property comprising any school, or in any conveyance owned, leased, or contracted by a school." (The full statute accompanies this story.)

The statute does not state that school must be in session for an offender to be in violation.

The arrest came after complaints were made to Palos Heights police by a parent, Wodka said.

"It may start a debate about the letter of the law versus the spirit of the law," Wodka said. "This wasn't us trying to get him on a technicality, we did our part and the rest will be seen."

Olszowka posted bond on Sept. 20 and police are continuing to investigate, Wodka said.

He is registered in Orland Park as a sex offender.

UPDATE: At the time of his arrest Olszowka was near a bathroom that was occupied by a juvenile in the vestibule shared by the church and the school, said Deputy Chief Dave Delaney. Police were contacted the previous Sunday about a suspicious person seen loitering several hours earlier and were following up on that complaint, Delaney said.



SOURCE and Read More:

  • http://palos.patch.com/articles/police-arrest-sex-offender-during-sunday-mass-at-st-alexander

If the link is dead or no longer live please email us at [email protected] for assistance.

Tags: ,

Category: Church Security

Comments are closed.