For Immediate Release
RSONU Arrests Non-Compliant Tier 2 Sex Offender
Washoe County Sheriff's Office
On March 10, 2023, the Regional Sex Offender Notification Unit (RSONU) arrested non-compliant Tier 2 sex offender Michael Welker.
A criminal history check of Welker revealed that he had a prior conviction for Prohibited Sex Offender Acts when he was convicted of Statutory Sexual Seduction on April 20, 2007, in Washoe County, Nevada. With that conviction, Welker was then required to register as a sex offender and register his address.
During their investigation, RSONU Detectives determined that Welker had not registered with the Nevada Sex Offender Registry.
The RSONU was formed in 1998 to be compliant with federal law passed in 1997. At that time Washoe County, the City of Sparks and the City of Reno all agreed there was a need for coordination in law enforcement in the tracking, monitoring, investigation, public notification, and the arrest and prosecution of non-compliant sex offenders.
The Nevada State Police Parole and Probation joined RSONU in 2021. The RSONU operates as a regional, multi-jurisdictional and collaborative entity to carry out the requirements of community notifications as set forth in Chapter 179D of the Nevada Revised Statutes.
The RSONU’s jurisdictional boundaries encompass all of Washoe County, including the Cities of Reno and Sparks.
In addition to the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office investigator, investigators from RPD and SPD are sworn in as Deputies in partnership with the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office to carry out the mission of the Unit.
The WCSO also provides an Administrative Office Support Specialist to help with clerical functions.
Currently, there are about 1400 registered sex offenders in the Reno, Sparks and Washoe County area.
These offenders are monitored by investigators from the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office, Reno Police Department, Sparks Police Department, and Parole and Probation.
The RSONU is open Monday through Friday, 7:00AM-5:00PM, excluding holidays, and can be reached at 775-325-6483.
The Washoe County Sheriff's Office is dedicated to preserving a safe and secure community with professionalism, respect, integrity and the highest commitment to equality. Sheriff Darin Balaam is the 27th person elected to serve as the Sheriff of Washoe County since the Office was created in 1861. The Washoe County Sheriff's Office strives to ensure public safety by building trust and creating partnerships within the diverse communities in which we serve. We will promote the dignity of all people supported by our words and actions through open communication while fostering an environment of professionalism, integrity and mutual respect.