AP Impact: Some ankle bracelet alarms go unchecked
Parole Agent Steve Nakamura uses a flashlight to inspect a GPS locater worn on the ankle of a parolee in Rio Linda, Calif. Electronic monitoring of criminals debuted in 1983, when a New Mexico judge inspired by a Spiderman comic book allowed a man who vio
By DAVID B. CARUSO and NICHOLAS RICCARDI Associated Press
More and more agencies are using electronic ankle monitors to keep tabs on offenders. But the trackers have proliferated so much that some officials are struggling to handle an avalanche of monitoring alerts for things like curfew violations, lost satellite contact and dead batteries.
Amid all that white noise, alarms are going unchecked - sometimes on defendants now accused of new crimes.
Supporters of electronic monitoring say recent high-profile tragedies allegedly involving monitored offenders are the exception. They say the trackers are a valuable tool for authorities.
But reports show that some agencies don't have clear protocols on how to handle the many alerts, or don't always follow them. At times, officials took days to act, if they even noticed, when criminals tampered with their bracelets or broke curfew.
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