The use of electronic monitoring devices doubled between 2005 and 2015, according to the Pew Charitable Trusts. These devices use GPS to monitor a person whether he or she is in Maryland or any other state. They are considered to be more humane than simply locking an offender behind bars. For those who have been required to use an ankle bracelet, however, it is often described as akin to being incarcerated.
Since a person’s every move can be monitored, it is possible that his or her rights may not always be respected. One person was taken into custody after an issue with his GPS signal caused it to report incorrect information about his location. In some cases, simply removing the device to relieve skin irritation can result in criminal charges. Individuals may also not be able to remove the device to get an MRI or an X-ray scan. This is true even if the alleged offender wearing the monitor hasn’t been convicted of a crime yet.
Those who are asked to wear an ankle bracelet may have to do so for the rest of their lives. In addition to the government knowing that person’s every move, he or she may be required to pay a daily fee of up to $25 to use it. If the fee isn’t paid, the wearer may be sent back to prison.
A conviction on either a misdemeanor or felony charge could have negative long-term consequences. These consequences could include being asked to wear a monitoring device at all times. However, an attorney could potentially negotiate a plea deal that doesn’t require such monitoring. It may also be possible for legal counsel to obtain an acquittal or get the case dropped. This may be done by having evidence suppressed prior to a trial.