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

B.C. Fire chiefs concerned over home-grown cannabis and fire hazards

More legislation is needed around electrical, fire codes

Former hostage negotiator to hold class in Victoria

Cathy MacDonald will teach communication skills on Sept. 26

Can you name all four of Victoria’s ‘sister cities’?

Partnerships with Asian, Russian countries have resulted in tourism, investment opportunities

Saanich churches seek to spread the blessings of pet ownership

St. Luke Cedar Hill Anglican Church will hold its annual Blessing of the Animals Service Sunday

Victoria UnWined helps grant wishes for children facing critical illness

UnWined Vancouver Island raises money for Make-A-Wish BC & Yukon

VIDEO: Tour de Rock rider says event provides badly needed support

Cancer survivor and volunteer firefighter Nicole Emery speaks about importance of fundraising tour

Federal use of A.I. in visa applications could breach human rights, report says

Impacts of automated decision-making involving immigration applications and how errors and assumptions could lead to “life-and-death ramifications”

POLL: How much should rents increase in 2019?

A task force has recommended the provincial government limit rent increases for… Continue reading

Rattie scores 3 as Oilers blank Canucks 6-0

Vancouver slips to 1-5 in exhibition play

Veterans Affairs ordered to take second look before supporting vets’ relatives

Liberal government ordered officials to adopt a more critical eye

Dead B.C. motorcyclist was member of group that raced down mountain road

Some group members record their rides on Strathcona Parkway and post times to page

Indigenous athletes in spotlight at BC Sports Hall of Fame

New gallery to feature Carey Price, Kaila Mussel and Richard Peter

B.C. couple who went missing on flight from Edmonton named by family

Family released a statement Wednesday saying they’re still intent on finding the two-seater plane

VIDEO: A close look at what you were breathing during the B.C. wildfire season

Electron microscope images show soot and tar particles generated by worst B.C. fire season

Most Read