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Deputies go door-to-door for Operation Predator

Posted at 7:30 PM, Feb 24, 2016
Johnny Driver’s choices in life have left him in a bad place.
 
“I’ve lost everything, and to be truthful with you. My life is s****,” Driver said.
 
Living on the streets, Driver sleeps behind a New Port Richey grocery store, so it's not easy to maintain a permanent address as the state requires.
 
“If it’s raining, I find a little shelter or a cardboard box or something like that,” Driver said.
 
Driver’s run-in with the law dates back to 1987, when was he charged with sexual battery.
 
He understands the system and laws that placed him on the sexual offender registry, Driver added. 
 
But now it’s made it near impossible for Driver to keep a job.
 
“I want to be productive," Driver said. "I want to prove that I’m not what this piece of paper says. They read a piece of paper and they automatically think the wrong thing.” 
 
Driver is one of more than 900 people registered sex offenders in Pasco County. 
 
Deputies are paying them all a visit as part of a statewide program called Operation Predator.
 
The mission is verify addresses and confirm they are living where they say they are.
 
“We go down the list and note any change,” said detective Carlos Ocasio.
 
Last year, Pasco County toughened its ordinance, barring certain sex offenders from living within 2,500 feet of a school or other places where children congregate. 
 
“We are just trying to keep the neighborhoods safe and our kids safe. Ocasio said. "If they have to go to another county, so be it, but they committed the crime.” 
 
But Driver said he’s never committed a crime against a child, despite what people may think, because he is on the offender registry.
 
“I got nieces. I got nephews. And you can go and talk with any of them and they would tell you that I never ever had anything with them whatsoever with anything like that,” said Driver.
 
To keep track of any sex offenders in your neighborhood, you can register on the FDLE's website: http://offender.fdle.state.fl.us