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Stepped-Up Sheriff’s Patrols, New Sex-Offender App, Candy Buy Back: Halloween Game Plans

| October 30, 2018

halloween 2018

Be careful out there. (© FlaglerLive)

It’s not for nothing that immediately after the clock strikes midnight at the end of Halloween night, After Americans will have bought 600 million pounds of candy for the occasion, the blue flag marking National Diabetes Month will rise to bring awareness to the 30 million Americans with diabetes, and the 80,000-some deaths attributed to the disease every year. But over the next two days local authorities will be concerned with more immediate matters of safety and health.

The Flagler County Sheriff’s Office will have a speed enforcement detail on Halloween day at locations known to be crash-prone, the agency is cautioning. This detail will focus on speeding and aggressive driving. Patrol units, bicycle patrol, and auxiliary patrols will also have an increased presence on residential neighborhood roads where children are trick-or-treating.

Sugar Mill Plantation and the Bellaire Drive-area of Palm Coast in particular are known to have heavy pedestrian and vehicle traffic during Halloween. Lighted crosswalks will be operated by deputies in Sugar Mill Plantation in order to help pedestrians safely cross Old Kings Road. Pedestrians are urged to only cross at the lighted cross walks when possible.

In Flagler Beach, keep in mind that Eagle Lakes is a private community, and public parking is not allowed on vacant lots or in the road. The Eagle Lakes Home Owners Association has issued passes to residents and authorized guests and will be controlling access to their community.

The sheriff’s DUI patrol will be active over the next few days: you should have a designated driver if you go partying and would rather not take a one-way ride in the sheriff’s “taxi,” to the county jail, where orange costumes await.

“There will be a lot of Halloween activities and fall festivals going on this week and into the weekend,” Sheriff Rick Staly said. “Safety is our number one priority. Please drive slowly and watch for trick-or-treaters. Secure your pets before answering the door. If you consume alcohol, have a sober driver.” Securing pets is a special concern in light of a recent dog attack of a pizza delivery man in Palm Coast, just as the dog’s owner opened the door to take delivery.

If you’re worried about what homes to let your children target for trick or treating, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement this week launched a new mobile app, making it easy for citizens to see where sexual offenders have registered a residential address anywhere in Florida. The “Search Sexual Offenders and Predators” button is one of seven FDLE public services featured in the new app, which may be downloaded here.

To use the interactive map to display the registered residential addresses of sexual offenders and predators, location services on the mobile phone must be turned on. However, all other sections of the app are still usable even if location services are not turned on. The app, developed in-house at FDLE, does not track your location or store your personal information.

There are 25 registered sex offenders living in Flagler County that have specific sanctions stating they cannot hand out candy, decorate for the holiday, or leave their porch light on during Halloween. These limitations are designed to protect children from potential threats from sex offenders or predators. Sheriff’s Deputies and probation officers will visit the homes of all 25 offenders with these sanctions on Halloween day to conduct a walkthrough of their residence and instruct them on the limitations. These offenders must be in their home by 4:30 p.m. on Halloween day and remain inside for the rest of the night.

The app also allows searching active Amber, Missing Child and Silver Alerts, search wanted persons or stolen vehicle information, search unsolved cases in Florida and submit a tip about suspicious activity.

On Oct. 31, the sheriff’s office released a video featuring Staly as Sheriff Woody, and his usual sidekick in Fugitive Friday Bingo videos, this time as Buzz Lightyear, offering Halloween tips. See the video to the right.

The sheriff offers the following guidelines:


  • Make sure your costume fits properly and that masks don’t obstruct your vision.
  • Carry a flashlight or a glow stick.
  • Never trick-or-treat alone.
  • Only visit well-lit homes and always stay on the porch. Never enter the home.
  • Look both ways before crossing the street and never run in the street.
  • All candy should be inspected by an adult before eating.


  • Supervise children at all times.
  • Inspect all candy before eating letting your kids (or you) eat it. When in doubt, throw it out.
  • Speak with your child about an emergency plan in case of separation.
  • Make sure your child knows their home phone number and address.
  • Consider attending a trunk-or-treat or community event near you.


  • Reduce your speed and watch for children in the road.
  • Use your headlights, even at dusk.
  • Don’t let children ride unsecured in vehicles, even when driving from house to house.
  • This isn’t the time to ride with headphones or blaring music on: be alert to sights and sounds.
  • If you drink, do not drive.

Meanwhile, as the estimated 3.4 pounds of candy consumed by the average American each Halloween courses through your system–and your children’s–Flagler Dental Associates is hosting its seventh annual Candy Buy Back program starting Nov. 1 through November 10. The program allows all area trick-or-treaters to earn $1 per pound of candy turned back in, for up to 5 pounds per child.

“We want to encourage kids to make wise decisions about their dental care at a young age,” said Dr. Ryan Smith of Flagler Dental. “Eating less candy will also help them avoid unnecessary cavities.” The unopened candy is being collected at both Flagler Dental Associates locations during regular business hours and will be sent overseas to deployed soldiers. All children are welcome to participate:

Flagler Dental North
30 Office Park Drive
Palm Coast
386 446 3883

Flagler Dental South
97 Flagler Plaza Drive
Palm Coast
386 693 4883

And for extra consciousness of sugar’;s effects, the Flagler County Commission will again support Florida Hospital Flagler in its efforts to raise diabetes awareness by raising the “Unite for Diabetes” blue flag at 8:15 a.m. Nov. 5, in front of the Government Services Building. The ceremony will precede a commission meeting.

Speakers will include Commissioner Nate McLaughlin, Florida Hospital Flagler Chief Nursing Officer Kathy Gover, Florida Hospital Flagler Foundation Member Laura Gilvary, and Flagler County Health Department Administrator Bob Snyder. Snyder will introduce a diabetes education, training, treatment, and prevention program that will begin in 2019.

Diabetes affects 14 percent of Flagler County adults, or nearly 13,000 adults, and it was identified as a local health priority during the last community health assessment. “Since our diabetes rate is two percentage points above the state average, we expect this new education program will help reduce the trend and allow our neighbors with diabetes to lead healthier lives,” Snyder said. The commission meeting will include the reading of a proclamation, recognizing November 14 as “World Diabetes Day.”

“Diabetes awareness is so important,” McLaughlin said. “An early diagnosis can prevent a host of other medical-related issues. Please join us, and wear blue.”

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23 Responses for “Stepped-Up Sheriff’s Patrols, New Sex-Offender App, Candy Buy Back: Halloween Game Plans”

  1. Jaclyn says:

    What time does trick or treating start in sugar mill plantation on old kings start?

  2. Dave says:

    Also, please stay out of Bunnell, specifically Sawmill Estates and Colony Park, If you do not live In these areas do not trIck or treat there, they do not want you. Every year the city promotes trick or treating in these areas , setting up patrol cops and port o potties like it’s some kind of event at the expense of the home owners. STOP BRINGING YOU KIDS OUTSIDE THIER OWN NEIGHBORHOOD!!!. and to The City Of Bunnell ,STOP promoting this as an event to make yourselves look good, you have ruined Halloween for many residents!

  3. Mark101 says:

    If a homes porch light is NOT ON bypass that home. Its common sense.

  4. well says:

    How about we tell all those tricker-treating that the black stuff they are walking on is still a road that cars need to drive on to get to their homes. I’m not talking kids here, I’m talking the adults that line up from one edge of the road to the other and DO NOT MOVE. My road is almost a mile long and last Halloween it took me over 20 minutes to get down it because NO ONE WOULD MOVE. I beeped the horn and they looked at me and kept walking. It wasn’t until I didn’t stop blowing the horn that they finally moved. That is beyond stupid, it’s rude, uncouth, and sets a bad example for their kids. Police need to do something about that because it is dangerous. I’m all for tricker-treating safely and smart and not moving for vehicles or parking on both sides of the street where there is barely room for a car to get through is not how you do it. So, to the cops that will be in my neighborhood because they are always there on Halloween, how about you make a pathway for the cars to get in and out keeping everyone safe. Watching them walk does nothing–it should never take me 20 minutes to drive a mile and people should HAVE SOME MANNERS AND MOVE OUT OF THE WAY!!!!

  5. gmath55 says:

    I stopped handing out candy because only three to five children show up. I’m in the S – section. I guess most go to a Halloween function at their school.

  6. PC says:

    So…why should I buy candy then if they are encouraging drop offs? Yeah…my lights are staying off and I’m going to spend that $100 on candy on something nice for myself. Thanks….

  7. Longman says:

    bah- humbug to all you posters… i guess getting old sucks

  8. Anonymous says:

    Are there any haunted houses this year?

  9. Lem says:

    My goodness there are a lot of crabby people commenting. I will be at Sawmill Estates happily handing out candy. So come on over. They keep traffic to a minimum so it’s safer for the kids. There is a reason they are decorated lavishly. If they didn’t want to participate they wouldn’t go to all that trouble. Happy and safe Halloween to all 🎃

  10. Dave says:

    Age has nothing to do with it. Parents are taking their children in cars from one neighborhood to the other, this is teaching kids greed and putting stress on families that are trying to celebrate a neighborhood holiday. Keep your children in your neighborhood its simple.

  11. Mary Fusco says:

    Longman, what does this have to do with getting old? I had 4 children. When they were trick or treating age, we went to our immediate neighborhood for an hour or 2. After that, in NY, it was to cold. They went with their friends, got their candy and went home. What is with these parents always looking for the neighborhoods where they can get more or better. Who in their right mind puts kids in cars and drops them off in different neighborhoods for better candy. Go to the store and buy your kid the best and let them eat it. I live in the W section and we have not had a single kid in many, many years. I don’t bother making up bags with candy any more.

  12. Outsider says:

    What a bunch of party poopers. Living on a country road makes me miss the kids coming to the house for Halloween. Try to remeber how much fun it was as a kid trick or treating, and return the favor. There are worse things kids could be doing with their time. And if you don’t want them there, turn off your porch light and go to bed early; it’ll be less stressful for you!

  13. Danielle says:

    Wake up call to rude ass rich people: unfortunately some kids don’t get the pleasure of growing up in a fancy estate or community and because apparently you don’t come outside of your bubble to really notice the rest of the world the working class isn’t what it use to be and even a lot of retired people are barely getting by in their social security money that a lot of average and of course poorer neighborhoods don’t really decorate or hand out candy like the good ole days. But how dare you shame families for wanting to take their kids to a safe place and show them what trick or treating is really like. What they remember it use to be like when they were younger. And really tell the parents to just go out and buy a bag of candy for their kids?? Are you kidding me?! You are missing the whole point it’s not all about the candy for the kids either it’s getting to dress up and go around looking at all the scary houses with friends and family and yes get candy. Why do the kids have to suffer and have a miserable holiday because their neighborhood can’t afford all the fancy decorations and loads of candy? Because your greedy rich ass wants to only save it for only your rich kids because only rich kids deserve to have fun during the holidays. And fyi no trunk or treat is not even close to the amount of fun as regular trick or treating. So thank you those who do invite the whole community to enjoy and celebrate together this fun kids holiday because in the end it’s all for the kids.

  14. Dave says:

    Lem, they used to decorate lavishly,now the residents are getting sick of it, the city invites families from all over to come, blocking off roads and sending thousands of people threw , we will have our lights out not participating until all the greedy parents with their kids stay in thier own neighborhoods.

  15. Long Timer says:

    Sawmill estates has been the place for Bunnell trick or treaters for many, many years. Likely, long before you moved there. If you don’t want to participate, turn your lights off. There’s no reason for you to be a grouch. All kids are welcome in sawmill estates and anywhere else in the county they feel like going. If you don’t like it, move. As far as I’m concerned, I”ll be loading my kids up and driving them to Sawmill Estates JUST despite your rude comments.

  16. Longman says:

    who the heck are these socialist little kids anyway.. wanting free handouts from well- to- do, nicely decorated neighborhoods on Halloween!?!

  17. visiting dave says:

    All for visiting Dave in sawmill estates for Halloween, put your hands in the air!!!

  18. None ya says:

    I think what David was trying to say is… Sawmill Estates in Bunnell is hands down the best spot to go trick or treating in all of Flagler County! Everyone should come on out, we look forward to this day every year. The location is North Chapel & E Woodland in Bunnell. Hundreds of people, great decorations, and lots of candy. HAPPY HALLOWEEN DAVID!
    – A Sawmill Estate Resident =]

  19. Dave says:

    Yes all Bunnell city residents trick or treating are welcome in Bunnell, keep your kids within walking distance of your homes, that is all. Bunnell City slowly over the years built it up much to the dismay of locals. Each year more and more residents are turning off thier lights until they get the point. It’s become a circus.

  20. Palm Coast Parent says:

    First off thank you to all the neighborhoods who do make it enjoyable for the kids. On the other hand I can see where some people are getting tired spending so much money every year on candy. Maybe the county could start changing it up a little and block off roads in different neighborhoods each year. Maybe next year the Woodlands or the “C” section could be the “SAFE” zone for trick or treating. Change the section every year. Might not work in all sections or even at all but worth a shot of trying. I think it would be cool that way the same neighborhoods aren’t slammed every year with buying all the candy to hand out. My kids are too old for trick or treating now but I think that would be awesome.

  21. D M says:

    Where si the Drug Offender registry?

  22. mark101 says:

    Never bought any candy, never turned on my light. Easy.

  23. Dave says:

    I saw alot of lights out this year. Maybe they are getting the point. I love the idea of rotating neighborhoods to hand out candy.

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