Sex Offender Registration Leads To Camping Closure

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A sex offender registering his home address as an Ashland park prompted city officials to ban overnight camping at all city parks.

Ashland City Commissioners voted unanimously Thursday to give initial approval to prohibit overnight camping without prior special permission in city parks. The amended ordinances will need final approval to become law.

Ashland Police Chief Rob Ratliff says the move was prompted in part by a sex offender who had listed his address on the Kentucky State Police registry as Ashland's Riverfront Park.

Ratliff said the man was not the only individual spending the night in city parks.

Ashland Parks and Recreation Director Sean Murray said he felt the change was in the best interest of citizens and Ashland parks.