The California Department of Corrections is spending $5.4 million on 500 global positioning system devices for sex offenders on parole, the Orange County Register reports. Sex offenders will wear the computer mouse-sized ankle monitors all day, every day. The devices, which work indoors, track offenders everywhere. The devices page parole officers when sex offenders approach forbidden zones like schools or day-care centers. Parole officers get daily reports via e-mail or fax of offenders’ whereabouts.
Sex offenders “are less likely to re-offend if they know we are serious about watching them,” said a probation officer. Roseeanne Froeberg, an Orange County prosecutor, said GPS devices are “better than no monitoring, but of limited use.” Most sex crimes occur at private locations -including the sex offender’s home or car, she said. These are places that wouldn’t necessarily catch the attention of law enforcement monitoring GPS locations of offenders. “With today’s technology, you know where to find (sex offenders) but you have no way of monitoring their criminal activity,” she said.