Saturday, October 05, 2019

High tech and crime prevention

A man was accused of entering a North Side house earlier this week and stealing guns and a computer while holding a woman at gunpoint was being monitored through GPS and out on bond for another break-in in which he’s accused of raping a woman." ... " George L. Goins, 37, no permanent address ... "According to the complaint, he broke into a woman’s house and raped her, saying the police “can’t stop me.”"

In the earlier case "Goins was initially held on a $10,000 cash bond, which was reduced in May to a signature bond with GPS monitoring." Now "Judge Ramona Gonzalez ordered a $25,000 cash bond Friday, saying if he posts the cash bond he will be required to have no weapons and comply with GPS monitoring and house arrest."

I'm kind of puzzled. Isn't there enough evidence to give him a permanent address, pending trial? The GPS bracelet says he was on the woman's block then.

One thing is clear--he was telling the truth when he said the police couldn't stop him. Neither does GPS. It just makes it easier to tie the criminal to the crime after the fact. It does nothing for crimes of poor impulse control, or crimes where the criminal doesn't think he has anything to lose, or is simply feckless, or thinks himself invulnerable. A catch-and-release police/prosecute policy will cultivate that attitude in people.

I'd think that GPS monitoring would deter people from further crimes who have good impulse control, are forward-thinking, and feel they have something to lose by getting re-arrested for a new crime. I suspect those folks commit some, but nowhere near most, of the crimes.

And GPS doesn't deter fraud, or other crimes that don't necessarily require physical presence.

But hey, we've got some nice high-tech toys--they have to be useful!

1 comment:

Assistant Village Idiot said...

I will add in that many criminals are more opportunistic than impulsive or careful planners. They carry an array of flexible, possible plans about with them at all times. For GPS-type solutions, this is worst off both worlds.