Halloween is just days away — and it's understandable for parents to be apprehensive about what homes their children are approaching.

New Jersey State Police maintain a list of registered sex offenders in New Jersey communities. But it's important to understand what that information means — and what it doesn't.

Who is in on the map? The online searchable database — and the maps per town below — only include those sex offenders judged to be "tier 3" (high risk of re-offense) and "tier 2" (moderate risk). Those judgments are made using state guidelines. A "tier 3" offender, for instance, might have caused serious physical harm to a victim, might have sexually penetrated a victim or might have sexually abused a child or a stranger.

Who isn't on the map? Those in "tier" 1 are considered low risk of re-offense, and not included in these lists. Someone whose sex offense didn't involve physical force, who didn't have multiple victims and who didn't go seeking them out is more likely to be in that tier.

And don't assume that just because you have the information below, you and your child are protected. The ACLU argues the registry isn't even all that helpful — because most sex abuse victims are targeted by family members or people they already know. And many of those crimes go unreported, and never wind up on these lists.

Only you can decide what's best and prudent to protect your family — whether from potential threats like the offenders on this list, or from the everyday risks you can't anticipate.

But still, knowledge — if interpreted in the proper context — is power. So find your town in the maps compiled by City-Data.com below and see what the registry shows. Just keep the caveats in mind.

• Absecon
• Allamuchy
• Allenhurst
• Andover
• Asbury
• Asbury Park
• Atlantic City
• Atlantic Highlands
• Audubon
• Avenel

• Barnegat
• Barrington
• Bayonne
• Beachwood
• Belleville
• Bellmawr
• Belmar
• Belvidere
• Bergenfield
• Berkeley Heights
• Berlin
• Bernardsville
• Blackwood
• Blairstown
• Bloomfield
• Bloomingdale
• Bloomsbury
• Bogota
• Boonton
• Bordentown
• Bound Brook
• Bradley Beach
• Branchville
• Bridgeton
• Brigantine
• Browns Mills
• Budd Lake
• Buena
• Burleigh
• Burlington
• Butler

• Camden
• Cape May Court House
• Cape May
• Carlstadt
• Carneys Point
• Carteret
• Cedar Grove
• Cedarville
• Clark
• Clayton
• Clementon
• Cliffside Park
• Cliffwood Beach
• Clifton
• Clinton
• Closter
• Collings Lakes
• Collingswood
• Colonia
• Columbia
• Cranbury
• Cranford

• Delaware
• Dover
• Dumont
• Dunellen

• East Brunswick
• East Newark
• East Orange
• East Rutherford
• Eatontown
• Edison
• Egg Harbor City
• Elizabeth
• Elmer
• Elmwood Park
• Elwood
• Englewood
• Erma
• Estell Manor
• Ewing

• Fair Lawn
• Fairton
• Fairview
• Fanwood
• Farmingdale
• Fieldsboro
• Flemington
• Florence
• Florham Park
• Fords
• Forked River
• Fort Dix
• Fort Lee
• Franklin Lakes
• Franklin
• Freehold
• Frenchtown

• Garfield
• Garwood
• Gibbstown
• Glassboro
• Glen Gardner
• Gloucester City
• Greenwich
• Guttenberg

• Hackensack
• Hackettstown
• Haddon Heights
• Haddonfield
• Haledon
• Hamburg
• Hammonton
• Hampton
• Harrington Park
• Harrison
• Hawthorne
• High Bridge
• Highland Park
• Highlands
• Hightstown
• Hillsdale
• Hillside
• Hoboken
• Hopatcong
• Hope
• Hopewell

• Irvington
• Iselin

• Jamesburg
• Jersey City

• Keansburg
• Kearny
• Kenvil
• Keyport
• Kinnelon

• Lake Como
• Lakehurst
• Lakewood
• Lambertville
• Laurel Springs
• Laurence Harbor
• Lawnside
• Lawrenceville
• Lebanon
• Leonia
• Lincoln Park
• Linden
• Lindenwold
• Little Falls
• Little Ferry
• Livingston
• Lodi
• Long Branch
• Lyndhurst

• Madison
• Magnolia
• Manahawkin
• Manasquan
• Manville
• Maplewood
• Margate City
• Marlton
• Matawan
• Mays Landing
• Mendham
• Mercerville
• Metuchen
• Middlesex
• Millburn
• Millville
• Monmouth Junction
• Montclair
• Montvale
• Morris Plains
• Morristown
• Mount Ephraim
• Mullica Hill

List continues below

• National Park
• Neptune City
• Netcong
• New Brunswick
• New Egypt
• New Milford
• Newark
• Newton
• North Arlington
• North Brunswick Township
• North Cape May
• North Haledon
• North Middletown
• North Plainfield
• North Wildwood
• Northfield
• Northvale
• Nutley

• Oakland
• Oaklyn
• Ocean City
• Ocean Gate
• Ocean Grove
• Ogdensburg
• Old Tappan
• Oradell
• Orange
• Oxford

• Palisades Park
• Palmyra
• Paramus
• Passaic
• Paterson
• Paulsboro
• Pedricktown
• Pemberton
• Penns Grove
• Pennsauken
• Pennsville
• Perth Amboy
• Phillipsburg
• Pine Beach
• Pine Hill
• Pitman
• Plainfield
• Pleasantville
• Pompton Lakes
• Port Monmouth
• Port Norris
• Port Reading
• Princeton
• Prospect Park

• Rahway
• Ramsey
• Raritan
• Red Bank
• Ridgefield
• Ridgefield Park
• Ridgewood
• Ringwood
• Rio Grande
• River Edge
• Riverdale
• Rochelle Park
• Rockaway
• Rockleigh
• Roebling
• Roosevelt
• Roselle
• Rumson
• Runnemede
• Rutherford

• Saddle Brook
• Salem
• Sayreville
• Scotch Plains
• Seaside Heights
• Seaside Park
• Secaucus
• Somerdale
• Somers Point
• Somerset
• Somerville
• South Amboy
• South Belmar
• South Bound Brook
• South Plainfield
• South River
• Spotswood
• Springfield
• Stanhope
• Stewartsville
• Stockton
• Stratford
• Succasunna
• Summit
• Surf City
• Sussex
• Swedesboro

• Teaneck
• Tenafly
• Teterboro
• Tinton Falls
• Toms River
• Totowa
• Trenton
• Tuckerton
• Turnersville

• Union Beach
• Union City
• Union

• Ventnor City
• Verona
• Villas
• Vineland
• Voorhees

• Wallington
• Wanaque
• Waretown
• Washington
• Washington Township
• Wayne
• Wenonah
• West Caldwell
• West Long Branch
• West Milford
• West New York
• West Orange
• West Wildwood
• Westfield
• Westville
• Wildwood Crest
• Wildwood
• Williamstown
• Woodbine
• Woodbridge
• Woodbury Heights
• Woodbury
• Woodland Park
• Woodlynne
• Woodstown
• Wrightstown

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