Bear Lake Group fights to keep sex offender out

Jeffrey LeVasseur

The local community is joining together to stop the state from housing violent sex offenders near the Bear Lake Campground in Blackwell. The Bear Lake Shores Association, Inc., has retained a Wisconsin law firm to intervene in court proceedings on its behalf.

“The state seems to be ignoring both local law enforcement and its own Department of Corrections recommendations,” said Joy Jokela-Margetta, president of the Association. “We need to bring new information to Judge Nielsen’s attention.”

The state Department of Human Services wants to place at least two violent sex offenders, Jeffrey LeVasseur and James Lalor both convicted of crimes against children, in a home that is less than half a mile from the campground. It is in the private Bear Lake Shores Development, which has restrictive covenants that explicitly prohibit rentals. Under a lease arrangement, the state plans to pay the new owner of the property, GWB Ventures, LLC, $2,500 a month to house the offenders.

For the full story, see this week’s issue of The Forest Republican.