Electronic monitors have emerged as a popular alternative to keeping someone behind bars. The ankle bracelets enable courts and corrections officials to track the location 24 hours a day of people on probation, parole or awaiting trial. Many people wearing monitors prefer them to overcrowded and often dangerous cells.
But, as we reported, cities and states are increasingly passing the costs of these monitors onto those who wear them, which drives defendants and their families into debt. Some companies and courts routinely threaten to lock up defendants who fall behind on payments. Family members have to scramble to find the money to keep loved ones from being sent back to jail.
We plan to keep reporting on this story, and we need your help. We’re interested in learning more about the costs of monitoring; the reliability of the technology; and how the data is collected, shared and acted on.
If you’ve been ordered to wear an ankle monitor or use a location-tracking application as a condition of your release from jail or prison, we would like to learn about your experiences.
We’d also love to hear from current and former employees at electronic monitoring companies, and from people who have known someone on a monitor.
If you prefer to reach us by email or phone, call or text 347-244-2134 or write to [email protected].