Your Probation Can Include Wearing Home and Alcohol-Monitoring Bracelets
Interviewer: Do the courts or probation officers ever use special equipment, such as alcohol monitoring bracelets or home arrest bracelets?
Adam: Yes. We do use alcohol-monitoring bracelets for those people who are on probation due to DUIs and crimes of that nature. We use home monitoring GPS units usually for the sex offenders so we can keep an eye on where they are. They also use the bracelets for people who are on bond.
Before someone is get sentenced, many times they’ll be serving house arrest as an alternative to being in jail. We use computer monitoring for those people who are on for computer-related crimes. We can put programming on their computer to monitor where they’re going. Make sure they’re not doing anything that they shouldn’t do.
The Terms of Intensive Probation Can Include Surveillance
Interviewer: Do you ever have to use surveillance to monitor probationers, or they just come to you and tell you what happened?
Adam: The intensive levels of probation can involve surveillance if we have reason to believe that they’re perhaps involved in a new crime, or say they have a no contact order with a victim, but we think they’re seeing their victim anyway. We’ll do surveillance so we can prove it. That’s generally reserved for the intensive level of probation.
Probation Officers Have the Right to Search your Home and Locate You if You Leave the Vicinity
With regular probation, if you’re doing what you’re supposed to do, we’re not going to start surveillance. If we have an order, one of our probation sanctions is, once you are convicted of a felony and you’re on probation, you waive your right to search and seizure. Once you waive that right, we don’t need an arrest warrant or a search warrant to come in and search your house or any of your property or anything under your control.
We don’t use that. That’s a standard probation condition for everybody. We don’t want to do that, but we reserve the right.
If we think you’re up to an illegal activity, we’re going to go look for it. Or if you abscond from probation, stop reporting, we have to come look for you. If that means we have to break down your front door to find you because you’re not cooperating, then we’re going to do it.
Ohio Probation Officers Prefer You Return Voluntarily
We don’t want to. We want you to come in. We want you to voluntarily turn yourself in, but if a defendant has made up their mind that they’re going to run and let us come and get them, we’re going to use whatever means we need to in order to come and find you.
Interviewer: That makes sense. You make the whole process sound so reasonable.
By Adam Hunt