Sex offender billboard campaign includes two deceased men

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind, (Dec. 9, 2014)-- A new sex offender billboard campaign showed the face and name of two deceased Indianapolis men.

The Marion County Sheriff’s Office, U.S. Marshals and Crime Stoppers announced a joint operation this holiday season to find sex offenders who have active warrants for failing to register.

One by one, a digital sign flashes the faces of 40 sex offenders who haven't registered. The billboard sits near the Indiana State Fairgrounds.

Jeffery Schmidt was one of the 40 names originally included in the list.

"I don’t feel like that’s right, They shouldn't have put that up, they should have had that checked out before they did this," said Betty Johnson, Schmidt's mother.

Johnson died in September 2013, according to a Marion County death certificate.

"That’s their mistake, they need to follow up on that," said Johnson.

Johnson says she trying to move past her son's death, but those bad memories came rushing back after several billboards depicted her son as a criminal on the run.

"It was just one that got through," said John Beeman, supervisory inspector for the U.S Marshals Service.

Beeman says Schmidt's name simply slipped through the cracks--adding that the list was whittled down from 90 sex offenders to 40.

"Unfortunately, in this case one did make it through. We missed it somewhere along the line," said Beeman.

Officers in Marion County are responsible for going door-to-door and checking-in on registered sex offenders.

So how did Schmidt's name make the list?

"Here in Indiana the sheriff is tasked with maintaining the sexual offender list and they've got the personnel to maintain and update the list," said Beeman.

Beeman says Schmidt's name will be removed from all three billboards. Johnson says she hopes no other parent will have to go through the same pain.

"They need to follow up on it and make sure they do their job instead of making another mistake like this one," said Johnson.

Douglas Hogrefe is the other deceased person who was on the original list.

A total of eight warrants have been cleared.

View the sex offenders police are searching for here.

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