New electronic monitoring devices on the way for B.C. offenders

GPS ankle bracelets allow mapping of movements, alerts if a parolee enters a no-go zone

Ankle bracelet for electronic monitoring produced by UK firm Buddi Ltd.

Advanced new ankle bracelets to electronically monitor high-risk offenders after their release from prison will soon be in use in B.C.

The move comes more than a year after the arrest of paroled rapist Raymond Caissie in the murder of Surrey high school student Serena Vermeersch.

At the time, Justice Minister Suzanne Anton acknowledged the monitoring of high-risk offenders needed to be improved. The Crown did not request electronic monitoring of Caissie.

In July, the province selected UK-based provider Buddi Ltd. to provide new monitoring devices to track released offenders and ensure they don’t violate release conditions.

A justice ministry spokesperson said Buddi will now conduct staff training and equipment testing.

B.C. Corrections expects to begin using the new devices in mid-December.

The hybrid radio frequency/GPS system has better tracking and reporting capabilities, including an ability to program in no-go zones and map an offender’s travels. An alarm sounds at the central monitoring site if the offender enters a restricted area, and vibration alerts on the ankle bracelet remind the offender to comply.

According to Buddi, supervisors can use the data on offender movements to help them alter their behaviour to reduce the likelihood of reoffending. The real-time location data may also help police quickly rule out monitored offenders as suspects in a new crime.

The old ankle bracelet system, which relies on a telephone landline, could only verify that an offender was home and was mainly used to monitor house arrest and enforce curfews.

A report to the province late last year said electronic monitoring technology is rapidly improving and future innovations are likely to include smartphone apps that alert victims when an offender is in the vicinity, as well as built-in drug and alcohol screening.

Just Posted

Alberni lacrosse players compete in national tournament

The B.C. bantam team finished fourth out of twelve teams

Port Alberni RCMP recover stolen tool chest

Police still searching for the rightful owner

Kuu-us Crisis Service celebrates 25th anniversary

Port Alberni-based business sets sights on national realm

Vehicle fire extinguished near Cathedral Grove

Fire shut down Highway 4 in both directions

McLean Mill’s steam engine done for the season

McLean Mill Society to consult with community about future of steam

Average Canadian family spends 43% of income on taxes: study

Fraser Institute’s consumer report shows taxes accounting for larger chunk of income each year

Women-owned businesses generate $68,000 less revenue than men’s: survey

When Dionne Laslo-Baker sought a bank loan to expand her burgeoning organic popsicle and freezies business in 2014, she was “shocked” by the feedback she received from one of the bankers.

Hedley frontman’s alleged sex offences case returns to court

Jacob Hoggard faces three sexual assault-related charges will return to a Toronto courtroom this morning.

Climate change likely to cause more sewage leaks, says environment minister

More than one hundred municipal wastewater systems did not report how much raw sewage overflowed from their pipes in 2017.

Priests molested 1,000 children in Pennsylvania, report says

The “real number” of abused children and abusive priests might be higher since some secret church records were lost and some victims never came forward.

Defiant as Trump rages, Omarosa says she won’t be silenced

Manigault Newman declared she will not be silenced by President Donald Trump, remaining defiant as her public feud with her former boss shifted from a war of words to a possible legal battle.

Death toll hits 39 in Italy bridge collapse; blame begins

The collapse of the Morandi Bridge sent dozens of cars and three trucks plunging as much as 45 metres (150 feet) to the ground Tuesday.

RCMP to search for body after man drowns in B.C.’s Buntzen Lake

Officers and fire crews responded but the man from the Lower Mainland is believed to have drowned.

Police chiefs call for stricter controls on pill presses to fight opioids

Canada’s police chiefs are urging Ottawa to beef up its fight against the opioid scourge by closely vetting people who import pill presses

Most Read