A second convicted sex offender who found a home in a Redwood Shores hotel turned senior housing complex will be relocated after staff and community members became aware of his convictions months after moving into the site. 

“All of the proper protocols were followed by the organization and they did everything under the law that they can do in regard to this situation,” County Manager Mike Callagy said about the nonprofit Mid-Pen Housing which operates the senior housing facility, Shores Landing.

Freddie Lee Jordan, 64, was convicted on sodomy charges in 1983, according to the California Megan’s Law website and has not been convicted of any further crimes since his release in 1991. 

Jordan is the second Shores Landing resident discovered to have a past of sexual crime. In early August Mid-Pen staff, discovered 70-year-old Sanchez Heriberto Martinez had been imprisoned for the continual sexual abuse of a child. 

Given that the offense committed by both men occurred more than seven years ago, the typical window used for background searches, the convictions had not been discovered before the tenants moved into the site located directly next door to a child care center. 

County officials were alerted to Jordan’s placement after he voluntarily reported his criminal history to facility staff. Members of the Redwood Shores Community Association have also been informed, Callagy said. 

An association board member who spoke on the assurance of anonymity shared frustrations with the nonprofit, especially after being informed Jordan had been one of the first tenants to move into the facility in March but had not registered within 30 days as required by law. 

“Our relationship right now is very stressed but RSCA is committed to our community and this is part of our community and we have to do everything and anything to keep it a good place to live and work out here,” the member said. 

Jordan is expected to be voluntarily relocated by Tuesday, Sept. 21, the board member was told. Mid-Pen Housing did not respond to requests for comment. 

Now, the board member said they’re concerned other residents may also have a past of sexual crimes, the main concern of the community. 

Redwood Shores residents had voiced their concerns that potentially violent individuals would be moved onto the site, formerly the TownePlace Suites, when the county purchased it late last year using state funding. The hotel was one of three sites purchased through the Project Homekey efforts, two located in Redwood City and one in Pacifica. 

Increasing concerns is the site’s proximity to a child care center which has experienced a decline in attendance after parents were informed of the first offender’s placement at Shores Landing, the board member said. 

“It’s not fair for them,” they said. “It’s not right.”

When approving the purchase of the hotels, supervisors worked to calm concerns by asserting proper background checks would be conducted to prevent serious felons from living in sensitive areas. 

Callagy shared strong support in Mid-Pen’s vetting of potential tenants and its operation of the site. He said staff is conducting research into whether state law may permit the nonprofit to ask certain questions that could reveal criminal history. 

The board member said the nonprofit informed them a different method for screenings will be used moving forward to allow for federal law to take precedence over state law, permitting the agency to conduct more in-depth checks on sexual crimes. 

Callagy also argued for balance on the issue. As a parent, he empathizes with concerns for the children while also acknowledging that everyone is deserving of housing regardless of their past criminal behavior. 

“We don’t want them living under a bridge or an encampment or somewhere they can’t get the resources to help themselves,” Callagy said. “These aren’t just homeless [residents], these are homeless seniors who are now in a safe environment where they’re thriving.” 

(650) 344-5200 ext. 106

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(9) comments

Newell Post

I don't know what these men did. But I do know that a system that puts people on the registered sex offender list for life with no possibility of removal for one-time low-level offenses is not right. The guy who lived next door to me for many years was on that list until the day he died..... at the age of 103. Maybe that was right, but neither I nor any of the neighbors saw even the slightest hint of any problems with him. I know another person who is on the list for something that happened 5 decades ago. Maybe that is also right, although we have many mutual friends and nobody has seen a problem. More reasonable states have a tiered system where the offenders in the worst tier are on the list for life, exactly as it should be. But offenders in the lower tiers for offenses such as Romeo-and-Juliet affairs, public urination, and streaking can petition to be removed after 10 or 20 years if it was a one-time offense and they show no signs of further problems.

JustMike650

Fowler - LORD knows you've worse than me - being in law enforcement - but want I tried to convey to FAB was ------> WHY would you choose to form your words like that? Are you saying since it was 1983 - and now it is 2021 - that makes it OK.

Ray Fowler

Just Mike

Let me see if I can straighten this out... HFAB asked a legitimate question. He asked whether the act of sodomy, committed years ago by the person placed in the Redwood Shores facility, was still considered to be a crime, and if it is now not considered to be a crime why is that person still required to register as a sex offender. It appears that HFAB's question was framed such that it applied to acts between consenting adults. While the state did not repeal the law prohibiting the act between consenting adults until 1975, it is still unlawful to commit the act with a minor. As the name of the person being placed by the county appears in the state's sex offender website, he is required to register as a sex offender for life. (There are some exceptions but they are rare.) I don't think HFAB understood the distinction. If I'm wrong, he can correct the record.

The county manager is covering for a woefully inadequate placement process. When this topic first appeared a couple of months ago, I asked if there was any reason why the county and Mid-Pen could not check the Megan's Law website when conducting their background checks. Crickets. If an applicant's name pops up on that website, assign him or her to a facility that doesn't have a child care center next door. While the county manager is correct in saying the homeless applicant... regardless of his past... is eligible for county services, that does not excuse either the poor judgment or use of an inadequate procedure. Some common sense has to enter into the mix, and that apparently is not happening. The county and Mid-Pen have to do better.

Coming full circle... your initial remark to HFAB was inappropriate.

Ray Fowler

I am not a member of RSCA, but it appears that organization's safety concerns about placement at a county housing facility have been realized.

What's disturbing about the two recent placements of two persons with a history of crimes against children in a facility next door to a child care center is that it didn't have to happen. The county and the NGO's suggesting that the background checks for placement were limited to the past seven years is pure bureaucratic blather.

If background checks for placement in a facility next to a child care center do not include the Megan's Law offender index... a source open to the public... then someone is not doing their job. The person being placed is entitled to placement, but it doesn't have to be at a facility next door to a child care center.

JustMike650

And it disturbs me that Callagy is going to the ends of the earth to DEFEND those whose spots never change. The impulse to offend is always there. That is why in some countries, the offending limb is removed.

HFAB

Committing sodomy in 1983? Is that still a crime today? If not, why would someone convicted of it have to register now as a sex offender unless it was forced?

Ray Fowler

Aitch-Fab

As the crime was committed against a minor, the offender is still required to register.

Comment deleted.
Ray Fowler

Just Mike... seriously?

JustMike650

WHY would you choose to form your words like that? Are you saying since it was 1983 - and now it is 2021 - that makes it OK.

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