Trick or Deceit
Special Report: Trick or Deceit
But what happened at this Billerica home plays more like a scary movie. The man smiling and handing out candy is a convicted sex offender. At one point our cameras even catch kids going inside the house, without a parent, to get their Halloween goodies.
The man, who spent two years in prison for molesting a child, says he sees nothing wrong with what he's doing.
Ryan Schulteis, 7News
"Having kids over? You don't think it's inappropriate to have kids over?"
"No, absolutely not."
But when we showed our tape to Billerica's police chief, it sent a chill down his spine.
Daniel Rosa, Billerica Police Chief
"I'm very concerned. It's very concerning to me that at the home of a Level 3 sex offender on Halloween night, we have kids going inside the home. I'm very concerned."
It was a shock to one mom whose kids were trick-or-treating in the same neighborhood.
Sandra Caruso, mother
"I'm horrified. I had no idea."
In Massachusetts, it is not illegal for convicted sex offenders to give out candy on Halloween. But other states have taken steps to stop it. In Tennessee, sex offenders are warned not to interact with any trick-or-treaters and are told to stay away from costume parties and haunted houses.
Other states, like New York, enforce a Halloween curfew on sex offenders. They must stay in their homes and not answer the door from 3 p.m. in the afternoon until the next day.
Now, because of the Halloween fright we found, some want to change the laws here.
Sen. Scott Brown (R), Wrentham, MA
"Other states have probation officers checking in periodically. They have within the terms of their probation they have prohibitions that make it so these types of things can't happen. In Massachusetts, we don't have that."
Until the laws are changed, as a parent, you can take an extra step to protect your child: check the online sex offender registry for your town to make sure you're not sending your kid up to the wrong door for candy.
Massachusetts Sex Offender Registry Board