CAMPO, Calif. - A state agency on Monday proposed relocating a man designated as a sexually violent predator to a remote Campo-area neighborhood.
The California Department of State Hospitals selected the 1100 block of Custer Road as the recommended area for the court-ordered residential placement of Douglas Ernest Badger, 70, into San Diego County.
10News initially told residents about the plan a few months ago, sending dozens to rally for the county to reconsider.
The county took a second look at the arrangement, but not much has changed. Badger will move to a different address but still live in Campo.
The home is located at 1138 Custer Rd. It is about 200 yards from the nearest neighbor and 2.2 miles from the nearest elementary school.
"The people aren't happy at all," said business owner Shannon Dierkop. He owns a local pizzeria and says in a small town with only one of everything, residents will see Badger often.
"Because we're a small area (the county) feels that they can put these people out here and not have as much of an impact as they would if they put them in the inner city or a more suburban environment," he added.
Dierkop added, "He has more of an opportunity to be able to get free, so to speak. There's more area for him to roam around out here. There's less law enforcement. I think there's less of a watchful eye, so to speak, because there are less people."
State officials have scheduled a Jan. 3 hearing to allow the public to weigh in on the decision.
Badger is an alcoholic and sexual sadist who takes pleasure in torturing and humiliating his victims, according to court documents. He was sentenced in 1981 to 10 years in prison for a sexual assault in Riverside County.
After being released, he was sentenced to another 10-year term following a 1991 conviction for an attack in the San Diego area. Following treatment at a state mental hospital, he was released in July 2006 to a trailer on the grounds of Donovan State Prison in Otay Mesa.
Two months later, he was returned to Atascadero State Hospital due to regressions in his mental state and psychological diagnoses, officials said.
Public comment regarding the proposed location can be submitted until Dec. 20. Email submissions should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. Comments can be submitted by phone by calling (858) 495-3619.