Children’s baseball umpire sentenced for failing to register as sex offender

SWANSEA, IL (KTVI) -A Swansea man has been sentenced to three years in prison for failing to register as a sex offender. Dennis G. Cotton was also found guilty of four misdemeanors for unlawful presence in a public park by a child sex offender

In 2016, Swansea police began to investigate after they received a tip that a registered child sexual predator was umpiring children’s baseball games in Smithton, IL. Cotton was arrested in late September.

While investigating, police discovered a misunderstanding that permits sex offenders to take umpiring jobs at children’s games. Police said Cotton applied for and received certification from the Illinois High School Association. Smithton School officials assumed that since Cotton was certified then he must have undergone a background check, but the IHSA does not do background checks.

Police have been working to put a new law into place.

The St. Clair County State’s Attorney’s office says Cotton is required to be on a child sex offender registry for the rest of his life.​