A professor emeritus of criminal justice at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice – Cuny, Barry Latzer, has proven the case for electronic monitoring for released criminals.
Professor Latzer says electronically tagging paroled offenders and those on probation is essential for lower recidivism and public safety. He based his insights on the fact that over 340,000 probationers and parolees were re-arrested and re-incarcerated in 2015 for violating their release conditions.
Latzer revealed that it is virtually impossible for parole and probation officers to monitor released offenders without some form of electronic assistance. Two-thirds of all paroled offenders are re-arrested for committing new crimes within the first three years of their discharge, Latzer stated.
This makes probationers and parolees to constitute security risks to the public – unless of course they are reigned in through some electronic monitoring device.
Study: GPS Tracker Has Helped Reduce Recidivism By 31%
Probationers, parolees and pretrial detainees are requested to wear electronic bracelets on their wrists or ankles for monitoring. The electronic bracelets works on GPS technology – which alerts the authorities to the movements of the offender.
It is the most reliable way to track offenders when they go where the conditions of their release do not permit.
Latzer states that GPS monitoring is the best criminal justice reform that lowers return to prison and guarantees public safety. When offenders are aware that they are under surveillance and whatever they do gets transmitted to the authorities, they will be mindful of their actions and movements.
This necessity has been found to reduce recidivism by 31% according to a US Justice Department study conducted in Florida.
How Does GPS Monitoring Help Prevent Recidivism… Additional Crimes Or Violations?
GPS tracking will help authorities to reign in monitored offenders in three main ways:
- It will prevent offenders from going to “geofenced exclusion zones” or places designated as off-limits. If the offender goes there, the electronic tracker alerts the authorities of his movement and time of entry, prompting a re-arrest and possible re-incarceration.
- It will also alert the wearer to visit certain “inclusion zones” such as rehab centers for treatment. This alert will remind the monitored person of the need to attend treatment in such places and his time of arrival will be passed off to the authorities monitoring him.
- The electronic monitors also help the authorities to determine if a monitored offender was at a particular crime scene or near one when some crime took place. This is because the GPS tracker notifies the authorities of the movement of the wearer together with time information.
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It will also prevent them from committing further crimes, thereby reducing recidivism, and promoting public security.