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February 15, 2007

The devil's in the details of GPS tracking of sex offenders

This AP article from Wisconsin highlights some administrative realities and challenges of a new law calling for tracking sex offenders after release using GPS systems.  Here are snippets:

Electronic tracking for Wisconsin's worst sex offenders — required under a law signed by Gov. Jim Doyle less than a year ago — would be dramatically scaled back under his two-year budget proposal. Doyle's budget, unveiled to lawmakers Tuesday night, would require child molesters and sexually violent offenders to wear global positioning bracelets only while they're on supervised release or parole.  That's a significant step back from the law Doyle, a Democrat, signed in May to set up GPS tracking until the offender died or was too feeble to pose a threat.

The Republican-sponsored law is due to take effect in July.  State Rep. Scott Suder, R-Abbotsford, its main author, said he was shocked at Doyle's changes.  He accused the governor of going back on his word. "This, in essence, takes away most of our ability to track these monsters. I'm left with my jaw wide open," Suder said Wednesday. "He signed the bill. He highlighted the bill throughout his campaign. Now he is nothing short of gutting the bill. I find it appalling."...

Doyle hailed the measure the day he signed it, saying it would help police know where offenders are at any moment. But questions have lingered about both the law's constitutionality and cost.  Three University of Wisconsin-Madison law professors issued an opinion earlier this month saying the law is unconstitutional because it amounts to extra punishment and the government can't submit someone no longer under its supervision to tracking.  The Corrections Department requested about $24 million and nearly 235 new positions to implement the law over the next two years. Doyle's budget proposal cuts the funding to $11 million and 122 positions.

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» GPS for Sex Offenders in Wisconsin from Sex Crimes
From Sentencing Law Policy, there is an AP article about the challenges of a GPS system for sex offenders in Wisconsin:This, in essence, takes away most of our ability to track these monsters. I'm left with my jaw wide open, [Read More]

Tracked on Feb 15, 2007 10:37:58 PM

Comments

With this move from Doyle, the score is as follows.

Sex Predators - 2
Children - 0


Refer to this for the other point.
Link: http://www.cfsw.info/blog/?p=136

Posted by: Andy | Feb 15, 2007 4:34:08 PM

Andy, don't you want to know where every former felon is at all times? It would seem to me the best thing is to implant a GPS device in every citizen. Then we can track everyone all the time. But, wait! Isn't that really expensive? Hmm, what to do? Well, I have an idea, we do a genetic test on all children and terminate, with extreme prejudice, those who show any potential for later criminal activity. This would make Wisconsin real safe [just like Berlin was in 1940; you remember - got rid of those Jews and Gays and Gypsies and anyone who was not to our liking].

Posted by: Bernie Kleinman | Feb 16, 2007 3:45:46 PM

What scares me most in my life are those sex offenders.I am afraid what such people could do to my baby.That's why I bought a child tracking device.My kid is only 5 years old and I will use the device once he is 9 or 10.

Posted by: Cara Fletcher | Jun 15, 2007 11:01:29 AM

There are several fundamental problems with GPS tracking, not the least of which is the 'mark of the beast' argument. Once the government gets us use to tracking one group of people, how much harder is it to convince us to track everyone?

One or two high-profile incidences does not justify throwing out our Constitutional rights, and that includes the Constitutional rights of ex-offenders, regardless of the nature of their crime.

Do we require GPS tracking of all drivers, simply because some choose to speed, drive while drunk, or commit acts of road rage? I think not.

We have already gone from police departments tracking sex offenders to having their locations posted on the internet. Now we want to know where they are 24 hours a day? This is a VERY dangerous slippery slope, one that few have even considered where it will lead, not only for sex offenders, but for all Americans, everywhere.

Posted by: James Short | Aug 29, 2007 12:57:19 PM

The tracking of sex offenders is a hot topic for many reasons. Not the least of which is their constitutional rights.

The truth is that many people, if they had their way, would likely send them all away to an island somewhere where we could forget about them. This, however, will never happen.

Simply put, I'm completely in favor of the various Sex-offender Registries and tracking systems, BUT:

THESE VARIOUS REGISTRIES AND TRACKING SYSTEMS SHOULD NOT BE AVAILABLE FOR ANYONE IN THE PUBLIC TO ACCESS RESIDENCY/EMPLOYMENT ADDRESSES/TELEPHONE NUMBERS. THESE VARIOUS REGISTRIES/TRACKING SYSTEMS SHOULD ONLY BE ACCESSIBLE TO AUTHORIZED LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICIALS.

Posted by: John Q Public | Dec 1, 2008 11:28:57 AM

Another insane move in this hysteria. What if the sex offender is molesting children at his home? This would not send out any alerts, because that is where he is supposed to be. In Tennessee we had a female pass a law to have screen names published, like that is going to do any good. People can change their screen names daily, or have up to 100 of them, through various servers. I am all for a solution to the problem of real sex offenders, but it seems most of these people are just posturing for the masses. Don't even get me started on Child Porn, because now the "mind police" think they know that anyone that is in possession of it is going to molest a child. Careful what you put on your computer. If you have a picture of a dead body, pretty soon they are going to assume you are going to kill someone. If you have a video of 9/11, then you must be intent on hijacking a plane and flying it into a building. And the patronizing continues.....

Posted by: JC | Jan 29, 2009 3:38:37 PM

I'm all for the monitoring of sex offenders via GPS controlled devices; however, it should not be used as an alternative to adequate prison time/rehabilitation. The fact is that while a GPS device can help to monitor the location of a sex offender, it cannot stop them from commiting a crime. A priority should be placed on eliminating future crimes from occuring by taking violent sex offenders out of the population rather than strapping on a GPS device and allowing them to roam free.

Posted by: GuideDog | Jul 6, 2010 2:29:31 PM

GPS tracking systems are only a small part of what it takes to keep our children safe from sexual predators. First of all, legislators need to ensure that these sex offenders cannot reside anywhere near children. Police need to spend less time hiding with their radar guns to give speeding tickets and more time monitoring areas where sex offenders reside. GPS tracking bracelets are a must! The people monitoring GPS trackers most be competent and knowledgeable.

Cutting funds to monitor sex offenders can in now way help our children

Posted by: Tracking System | Aug 28, 2010 2:39:52 PM

GPS tracking systems are only a small part of what it takes to keep our children safe from sexual predators. First of all, legislators need to ensure that these sex offenders cannot reside anywhere near children. Police need to spend less time hiding with their radar guns to give speeding tickets and more time monitoring areas where sex offenders reside. GPS tracking bracelets are a must! The people monitoring GPS trackers most be competent and knowledgeable.

Cutting funds to monitor sex offenders can in now way help our children

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