Big Brother on the West Coast

January 15, 2009

gridleyherald.com : California Places Entire Sex Offender Parolee Population on GPS Monitoring.

Every sex offender on state parole in California is now being monitored by GPS technology, a major accomplishment that is six months ahead of previous projections, California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation Secretary Matt Cate announced today.

Today, a total of 6,622 sex offenders – all active sex offender parolees in the community – are now being monitored by GPS. These offenders are fitted with an ankle bracelet that transmits its location to parole agents, who also visit these individuals on a routine basis.

komonews.com (Olympia, Washington) : Lawmakers consider implanted chips for tracking sex offenders

Lawmakers are considering a controversial bill that would outfit sex offenders with a surgically-implanted device that tracks their movement. The devices would replace the ankle bracelets that are currently used to track offenders. The bracelets have been criticized as a lacking device as offenders have successfully removed them in the past before disappearing off of the radar.

“(The devices would) be a little more difficult to take off,” said Rep. Maralyn Chase, D-Edmonds.
Chase is among a handful of lawmakers are looking into radio chips that can be planted under the skin. Some of the designs are no larger than a grain of rice.

The radio chips would allow police to track an offender from a sex offender using the same technology used at the Tacoma Narrows bridge toll.

The Department of Corrections admits even with the current devices, officers often lose signal. DOC officials also note that no tracking device can prevent crime.

The constitutional challenges which will erupt in response to these inane laws will most certainly not receive the amount of media attention that the introduction of these laws do. No other crimes are punished with such draconian measures and they are being imposed after these people have served their sentences and made their plea agreements. Therefore, they not only violate Equal Protection but also Ex Post Facto provisions of the U.S. Constitution and individual state constitutions. Aside from that point; how far will we as a nation allow our legislators to go before we demand our constitutional rights be protected?

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