Long Arm Of The Law
George Walker, Chief U.S. Pretrial Services Officer for the Central District of California, says that the 140 GPS-based electronic monitoring systems that his district acquired to monitor some people awaiting trial has increased safety while saving the district time, money, and space.
For instance, one device alerted the district that a defendant awaiting trial had violated the conditions of his conditional pretrial release by spending the weekend in Las Vegas, Nev.
Deputy Kevin Rau of the Marion County, Ore., Sheriff’s Office says that his department has purchased 12 iSECUREtrac GPS-based wireless tracking and monitoring systems, which can download a log of the wearer’s location or track the wearer in near-real-time. “Select offenders are offered the opportunity to be conditionally released based on GPS monitoring, and they always have the choice to decline,” he explains; offenders pay $2 more per day than the office pays iSECUREtrac for the use of the devices.
Walker notes that the devices save taxpayers money at the rate of about $60 per day because the wearers are not in federal detention. Both Walker and Rau say that traditional radio frequency-based electronic monitoring is not as portable, accurate, or reliable as GPS-based monitoring.
The iSECUREtrac systems include a tracking unit, an ankle bracelet, and a charging base station, and officers can set up exclusion zones to restrict wearers’ movements; online management tools are also available for mapping.
Abstracted by the National Law Enforcement and Corrections Technology Center(NLECTC) from the GPS World (08/04) Vol. 15, No. 8, P. 42; Whitford, Mary .