Gang Task Force to consider electronic monitoring -, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Gang Task Force to consider electronic monitoring

By Jennifer Emert - bio | email

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - The Albany Gang Task Force made 35 arrests in the last month and now a Superior Court Judge is offering a new tool to better track gang members if they're released on probation.

Dougherty County has had an electronic monitoring system since 1998. Right now only 8 law enforcement agencies regularly use the system and Thursday Judge Willie Lockette encouraged the gang task force to ask local judges to use it as a condition of probation in order to keep tabs on repeat gang violence offenders. Judge Lockette explained it could be a good tool to see if members are gathering again after their release and help keep city and county costs down.

"It makes truly a big difference because the average cost of keeping an individual in our jail is about 50 dollars a day, where as electronic house arrest only cost about 11 dollars a day and the huge majority of the individuals who are placed on it bear the cost themselves," said Judge Willie Lockette, Dougherty Superior Court.

Judge Lockette explained the offer was also being extended to Dougherty County School Police to use with juvenile offenders. The monitoring device has a cell phone built in that allows officials to directly communicate with the offender.

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