GPS Tracking To Help Domestic Violence Victims
Real-Time GPS Devices To Alert For Help
When Amanda Ross was gunned down in cold blood outside her home by her former fiancee, people began to realize that a simple court appointed order of protection was not enough to save a woman who feared for her life after years of domestic violence. Steve Nunn, the murderer and son of the late Governor, had a track record of violence, which made Ross fear for her life everyday until it finally ended in September. This highly publicized event has raised many questions about victims of domestic violence safety and what needs to be done in order to protect them. The result from this tragic story is the creation of a piece of legislation known as “Amanda’s Bill”, and it was created to protect victims of domestic abuse with GPS tracking system devices.
Approximately 11,000 people have domestic violence orders placed against them annually in Kentucky, and the new bill should result in roughly 15% of those orders to allow some form of GPS tracking or monitoring. The GPS tracking system portion of the bill could be done in a couple of different ways. First, the GPS tracker could be used to monitor the movements of the violent offender the same way the GPS systems are used to monitor sex offenders. Second, the GPS tracking systems could be placed into the hands of the victim so if they ever feel they are in danger or threatened they could alert a “panic” feature on the real-time tracking device that would alert law enforcement.
The tracking system portion of the bill is no small task because it will mean court workers, social workers, and more will need to be educated on the GPS tracking equipment.
Legislation regarding the GPS tracking systems and other factors are still in the drafting process.
Real-Time Tracking Devices
Some opponents of GPS tracking technology state that the systems probably are not as effective monitoring sex offenders as the public would hope, and that the GPS systems would probably not be the answer to solving the problem of domestic violence. “These real-time tracking devices cost the state a considerable amount of revenue and they do not guarantee anything”, stated an opponent of the GPS technology.
Proponents of the GPS tracking technology explain that the real-time devices allow authorities to have a solid and continuous record of the offender’s movements, providing critical and informative data 365 days a year. The tracking systems are a tool that helps the justice system monitor these criminals, but in no means does that suggest that the GPS systems are going to stop or prevent future offenses. Preventing or stopping future offenses is a collaborative effort that requires probation officers, and everyone else involved, to pay attention and look for warning signs.
If nobody is properly monitoring the GPS tracking systems then the GPS systems are essentially useless.
Tracking Systems & Domestic Violence
The growing number of domestic violence cases shows that the current system is failing. More accountability needs to be placed upon probation officers, parole officers, rehabilitation programs, and law enforcement. GPS monitoring technology may improve the situation, but it will never cure the problem of domestic violence unless an eclectic effort is given.