Science and Technology News

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Criminal Justice Technology in the News

Law Enforcement News

Cincinnati Police Deploy First Officer Body Cameras
WLWT5, (08/10/2016)

Cincinnati has begun rollout of body-worn cameras for police officers. Officials expect to distribute 700 cameras by the end of the year. City officials have said officers don't have to tell citizens that they're being recorded. Officers will be required to activate the cameras in various emergency situations.
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Eaton County Sheriff Deputies Now Using Mobile Fingerprint Scanners
WILX10, (08/10/2016)

A Michigan sheriff's office is using mobile fingerprint scanners to accelerate identification of wanted persons. The Eaton County Sheriff's Office is among the first law enforcement agencies in mid-Michigan to implement the scanners, which are linked to the police in-car computers that transmit a scanned fingerprint to the Michigan Automated Fingerprint Identification System and to the FBI National Fingerprint database. In minutes, deputies can know if there is a record on file that positively identifies the person.
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Mo. Ambulance Agency to Purchase Body Armor, (08/11/2016)

The Marion County Ambulance District in Missouri will outfit its paramedics and EMTs with body armor. The agency won't require its employees to wear the vests, but will give them the option to do so. The total cost for the gear is estimated at $18,000.
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Corrections News

Prisons Chief Orders Sweeping Accuracy Check of Inmate Sentences
The Seattle Times, (08/10/2016), Joseph O'Sullivan

The Washington state Department of Corrections has directed staff to verify sentencing information before anyone is released from prison or community supervision to ensure offenders serve the correct amount of time. Staff are checking whether forms used by the courts are clear on whether sentences are consecutive or concurrent, according to a DOC spokesman. The review follows revelations of sentence-calculation problems. For example, in December it was announced that between 2002 and 2015, some offenders convicted of violent crimes had been mistakenly released early, an error that may have freed as many as 3,100 prisoners overall.
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California Inmates Help Train Puppies to Become Service Dogs
ABC News, (08/11/2016), Avianne Tan

Inmates at two California prisons are helping train puppies to become service dogs for wounded veterans and people with autism. The Prisoners Overcoming Obstacles and Creating Hope (POOCH) program is in place at the Richard J. Donovan Correctional Facility in San Diego and the Mule Creek State Prison in the city of Ione.
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Lawsuit Prompts California to Reduce Some Cellphone Prison Penalties
The Sacramento Bee, (08/12/2016), Jim Miller

A lawsuit filed by an inmate has prompted the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation to change its interpretation of a 2011 law and take steps to roll back the penalty for inmates caught with cellphone accessories such as chargers. Under the planned change, inmates found with cellphone accessories will face the loss of up to 30 days of good time credit, one-third of the current maximum penalty. Officials concluded that lawmakers were unclear about who the maximum penalty in the law applied to: inmates with cellphones or those with any cellphone-related items. An inmate sued the department over the penalty.
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Judge Rejects ACLU Challenge to Sex Offender GPS Monitoring
WMDT47abc, (08/12/2016)

A Delaware judge has rejected a challenge to a state law requiring GPS monitoring of certain convicted sex offenders who have been released from custody and are on probation. The lawsuit was brought by the American Civil Liberties Union on behalf of three high-risk sex offenders, who complained that wearing GPS monitors was embarrassing, sometimes painful and an invasion of privacy.
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Adult Probation & Parole Making Changes to Enhance Parolee Monitoring, Keep Public Safe
KSL TV, (08/10/2016), Nicole Vowell

The Utah Department of Corrections is taking steps to keep better track of offenders. The Adult Probation and Parole Division has expanded its partnership with the Utah Division of the U.S. Marshals Service's Violent Fugitive Apprehension Strike Team to apprehend more than 50 high-priority fugitives. Other improvements include the implementation of a statewide broadcast system to law enforcement agencies to notify them of high-profile fugitives, and the authorization of enhanced GPS monitoring in all community correctional centers.
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