HIGH-TECH EYE ON OFFENDERS (Suffolk bill would beef up its monitoring of sexual predators by having some wear GPS tracking devices)

Newsday/Jennifer Smith

If a bill proposing the use of GPS monitoring systems passes the county legislature today,some convicted sex offenders in Suffolk County could wind up wearing one. The bill would authorizethe county's probation department to set up a pilot program, in conjunction with the courts,requiring selected high-risk sex offenders to wear GPS equipment as a condition of their probation.The offenders' movements would be tracked so they stay away from areas prohibited by theirprobation, such as schools. Of the more than 800 registered sex offenders in Suffolk County, onlythose under the supervision of the county's probation department, currently about 300, would beeligible for the program. The courts would decide which of those offenders should wear the deviceas a term of their sentencing on a case-by-case basis.

(New York)