Lake Charles, La. - It's important that parents take all the proper precautions before stepping out to take your children Trick-or-Treating. One important precaution to remember is knowing where the sex offenders are in your area, says Sheriff Tony Mancuso. It's critical that you "know before you go" this Halloween.

It's easy to get real-time access by going to and clicking the "Sex Offender Watch" tab. Here's what you do,"Simply enter your home address to view a printable map of your neighborhood and any offenders in the surrounding area. If you aren’t planning on Trick-or-Treating in your own neighborhood but will be in a different neighborhood, you can also search that address beforehand so you know which houses to avoid,” says Sheriff Mancuso.

Sheriff Mancuso also encourages parents to take the extra step and register for free e-mail alerts. “You can enter your home, school, or grandparents’ addresses to receive real-time e-mail notifications any time an offender moves within two miles of any address you register." The alerts are sent as soon as an offender has registered with the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office.

The service is free to the public, and there's no limit on the number of addresses you can register, said a media release. Your email address and physical addresses are confidential. Sheriff Mancuso says he wants parents to "feel confident that they are armed with the necessary tools to keep their children safe this Halloween."

A CPSO Sex Offender Unit and Warrants Division will be out monitoring offenders during trick-or-treating hours on Tuesday, October 31, "assuring they are adhering to the restrictions and requirements."