People convicted of arson-related offenses in Ohio will have to register annually with local authorities under a new law in effect beginning this week.
Ohio joins the few states that require convicted arsonists to register with authorities. Officials hope it will help solve more cases, deter repeat offenses and prevent deaths and property damage. The law applies to people convicted of such offenses in Ohio or elsewhere. It doesn't include those who already completed their sentences. Attorney General Mike DeWine says it will help authorities investigating suspicious fires quickly determine whether convicted arsonists live nearby. Fire investigators have noted that won't prove who committed the crime, but they say it gives them a starting point. The registry won't be public record. It will be funded by registration fees.