Level Three Predatory Offender returns to Wadena

Level 3 Predatory Offender Paul Thomas Bright, age 56, returned to Wadena County on Saturday, March 6.

The Wadena County Sheriff’s Department and the Wadena Police Department announced a community notification for a Level Three Sex Offender who returned to Wadena County on Saturday, March 6. Paul Thomas Bright, age 56, moved to the vicinity of Bryant Avenue Southwest, Wadena.

Bright engaged in sexual contact with an unknown adult female and held her against her will. Contact included penetration. Bright gained access to the victim by entering her home without permission. Physical force, a weapon, and restraints were used to gain compliance.

In addition to level two notifications (schools and daycares as well as establishments and organizations that primarily serve individuals likely to be victimized by the offender), law enforcement may notify other members of the community whom the offender is likely to encounter.

The Wadena Police Department is available to provide you with useful information on personal safety. They may be reached at 218-631-7700. To report criminal activity by this offender or any other individual, please call 911.

The Wadena Police Department is releasing this information pursuant to Minnesota Statute 244.052. This statute authorizes law enforcement agencies to inform the public of a sexual or predatory offender’s release from prison or a secure treatment facility when the Wadena Police Department believes that the release of information will enhance public safety and protection.

Bright has been convicted of Criminal Sexual Conduct or another offense that requires registration with law enforcement pursuant to Minnesota Statutes 243.166 or 243.167.

He has served the sentence imposed on him by the court and is transitioning into the community. This notification is not intended to increase fear, but rather raise awareness. Law enforcement believes that an informed public is a safer public.

Convicted sexual and predatory offenders have always been released to live in our communities and law enforcement has the ability to register and track these offenders after their release from correctional facilities.

Local law enforcement currently tracks and monitors the activities of approximately 66 registered sex offenders in Wadena County. These offenders are required to maintain their registration with the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension and their residency and personal data also remains on file with local law enforcement agencies for monitoring purposes.

Sheriff Michael Carr has maintained a stringent program of monitoring all registered sex offenders in Wadena County and checks to determine their current residency status.

Wadena County Attorney Kyra Ladd has also been aggressive in prosecution of sex offenders failing to register their change of address or living status with the Minnesota Bureau of Apprehension as required by law.

All Level Three Sex Offenders are considered public information and are posted on the Minnesota Department of Corrections website listing the names, addresses, and the number of offenders within each county in Minnesota.

The Wadena Police Department and the Wadena County Sheriff’s Office will have copies of the public information sheet for Level Three Offenders residing in the Wadena County area.


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