GREENVILLE, PITT COUNTY - Pitt County deputies are on a hunt for registered sex offenders.
There are 233 sex offenders in Pitt County alone, said investigators. Deputies are going door-to-door in hopes of finding all of them.
The purpose of the search is to make sure the offenders are living where they say they are. This provides deputies with accurate information so the public is aware of offenders in their area.
"The predators that may re-offend, we want them to be held accountable," said Pitt County Sheriff Neil Elks.
Deputies also check to make sure the offenders are not breaking any laws.
"We look at his restrictions and see if he's supposed to be in contact with children," said Elks.
Deputies have enlisted the help of the U.S. Marshal for the Eastern District of North Carolina for the search.
"We go out with the Sheriff's Office working hand-in-hand. It's really more boots on the ground," said U.S. Marshal Scott Parker. "The Marshal Service working along with the Sheriff's Office will go wherever it takes to bring that person to justice."
Deputies said even if the offenders are not home, they can still gain valuable information as to their whereabouts from neighbors.
"That also helps us know the frequency of coming back out here," said Pitt County Sheriff's Detective Jeremy Monette about certain residences.
Deputies planned the search for at least 3 months. They executed it around Halloween for specific reasons. They said many offenders live in nice neighborhoods, and if you don't look at the sex offender registry, you may never know they're there.
Deputies located a total of 163 of the offenders as of Wednesday night. Six of the men whom they have not located are listed as missing or wanted.
To see if there are any registered sex offenders in your area click here.