Residents said they recently found out that two sexually violent predators, Douglas Badger and Merle Wakefield, may soon be allowed to live there.
EL CAJON, California – Affected neighbors held a rally on the mountain. Helix area in El Cajon on Tuesday against a proposal to house two registered sex offenders near their homes and schools.
The organizers said it could happen in just a few weeks, so act now.
As expected, the residents of the region are upset. They wore signs, t-shirts and signed a petition to keep the sex offenders away from their families.
“I’m in complete panic right now that there will probably be three or four more in this house. They’ll just wrap them up, ”said one of the rally organizers, Sarah Thompson.
Thompson is just one of the dozen of concerned residents who have gathered near a 3,500-square-foot home on Mt. Helix. The neighbors said they recently found out that two sexually violent predators, Douglas Badger and Merle Wakefield, may soon be allowed to live there.
“We live 500 feet from this house that they are supposed to house these violent predators so we’re outraged,” said Chris Jones.
78-year-old Douglas Badger has a long sexual assault rap sheet that began in the 1970s. He was convicted of child abuse, kidnapping and violent oral copulation. The neighbors also said they were briefed on Merle Wakefield just a few days ago and do not know his story. Liberty Healthcare is a non-profit agency that monitors sex offenders.
“I want to know how they monitor these people and how they make sure our neighborhood is safe,” Thompson said.
The San Diego Supreme Court announced the final day of public comments on Badger’s placement on Friday, April 9th. The Badger hearing is scheduled for April 20th and the Wakefield hearing is scheduled for May.
News 8 asked another neighbor what she would do if the sex offenders were allowed to move in, and she said, “I’m not sure. Get more security cameras and step up. I definitely won’t be too happy if I ever see her on my block. “
The organizers made it clear that they intend to keep fighting and putting pressure on the courts and Liberty Healthcare for as long as necessary.
WATCH: The residents of El Cajon are organizing against sexually violent predators that live in their community