Ohio county uses GPS bracelets to monitor suspects

CINCINNATI (AP) - Changes and improvements in technology are helping authorities in southwest Ohio track crime suspects and convicts and freeing up scarce jail space.

The Hamilton County sheriff's office owns or leases 143 electronic monitoring units with GPS and hopes to obtain 50 more. The ankle bracelets with global positioning system allow low-level offenders to be monitored while the jail is filled with those involved with more serious offenses.

The Cincinnati Enquirer reports (http://cin.ci/111Zink ) that authorities say the use of GPS monitoring enables them to track wearers in almost real time and show where they are and where they have been. Deputies can use laptops and cellphone apps to monitor, and can send voice messages to the wearers.

Police can also set up "exclusion zones" to alert them in domestic violence cases.

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