Track Your Child Like a Felon!

Readers — Of course there are a ton of child-GPSing devices out there now, to the point where letting a child simply step outside without one may soon become a federal offense. This ad just struck me as rock bottom. It’s like a film strip for a first grader who happens to be a mom. Anyway, I don’t know what we’ll do with future felons on house arrest. Giving them an ankle bracelet won’t seem like punishment anymore. It’ll just seem nostalgic! — L

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75 Responses to Track Your Child Like a Felon!

  1. SOA May 21, 2014 at 11:52 am #

    The only real reason for these are kids with autism who elope. They might need them. But your average kid does not need these.

  2. anonymous this time May 21, 2014 at 11:53 am #

    “Maria is always worried.”

    Maria needs to find her own path to peace and acceptance, because no one can control outside circumstances enough to guarantee the absolute safety of themselves or anyone else. If you imagine it’s possible, you suffer and worry. If you accept reality, you feel more relaxed.

    It’s a spiritual journey. It requires reflection and effort, but the rewards are enormous.

    But she can just opt out of any kind of self-awareness and just get “Pocket Nanny” instead, which further fuels her anxiety, and demonstrates to her child that he lives in a world where trust is nonexistent.

  3. Christopher Byrne May 21, 2014 at 12:11 pm #

    Well, yes. And check this one out, too: http://ttpm.com/p/9236/le-vise-products/my-buddy-tag–green/

    It’s a whole cottage industry. The idiotic problem with all of these is that if the child “leaves the zone,” he or she is merely going out of the app’s bluetooth range. So, let’s scare everyone by using the limits of technology.

    Face palm.

  4. Elizabeth May 21, 2014 at 12:15 pm #

    Maria may be happy again, but I doubt Ben is.

    Does the app alarm remind anyone else of a submarine under attack?

  5. Reziac May 21, 2014 at 12:15 pm #

    …suddenly, Ben is leaving the zone. Ben has learned to leave his phone under the designated swingset before going off to play in a more interesting park. The phone stays green. Mom is happy, Ben is happy. Ben learns that the best answer to distrust is deceit.

  6. octavio May 21, 2014 at 12:26 pm #

    Reziak: “…suddenly, Ben is leaving the zone. Ben has learned to leave his phone under the designated swingset before going off to play in a more interesting park. The phone stays green. Mom is happy, Ben is happy. Ben learns that the best answer to distrust is deceit.”

    Pocket Nanny is clearly a Free-Range app in disguise! It’s training Ben to think outside the zone (box) and encouraging him to go explore without adult supervision.

  7. Emily May 21, 2014 at 12:37 pm #

    >>“Maria is always worried.”

    Maria needs to find her own path to peace and acceptance, because no one can control outside circumstances enough to guarantee the absolute safety of themselves or anyone else. If you imagine it’s possible, you suffer and worry. If you accept reality, you feel more relaxed.

    It’s a spiritual journey. It requires reflection and effort, but the rewards are enormous.<<

    The rewards may be enormous, but the financial profit isn't, so that's why we have to stomp it down and make it shameful and wrong and borderline criminal, because if parents made peace with the idea of allowing their kids age-appropriate freedoms, the child GPS, baby knee pad, and crazy stroller trike companies would go out of business.

  8. lollipoplover May 21, 2014 at 12:40 pm #

    Instead of her phone alarm going off like a nuclear cloud is enveloping the playground, perhaps Maria can have an actual conversation with Ben about boundaries and behaving responsibly. “Stay on the playground Ben or you can’t play outside” would be a good start. Setting up zones means you expect him to break rules, not obey them. And having that alarm blare like that can’t be good for Maria’s anxiety disorder.

  9. MichaelF May 21, 2014 at 12:46 pm #

    “Maria is always worried.”

    Maybe Maria needs to see a therapist and worry less.

  10. Elisabeth May 21, 2014 at 12:56 pm #

    I honestly don’t understand why people think this will be healthy for their relationships with their children. The last thing my children need is to think of me MORE as Big M(Br)other. They already consider me an imposing boundary to be pushed against…even when I tell them to go run around outside and go wherever they think it would be cool to explore. There’s no surer way to have them come back within 5 minutes. :)

  11. Marcy May 21, 2014 at 1:19 pm #

    My autistic kid is a runner when he’s upset. This would not work for him AT ALL because when he runs he’s not thinking about grabbing any kind of tracking device. I would love a tool that actually helped me find him in the dark, but this isn’t it.

    This is designed for the parent who can’t look up from their phone at the park.

  12. Backroads May 21, 2014 at 1:20 pm #

    My personal favorite part is where Ben nearly tumbled off the cliff.

    Shame on the city for planning parks so near to deadly precipices.

  13. Tsu Dho Nimh May 21, 2014 at 1:24 pm #

    Ben could have so much fun with this … how about finding a friend with the same app and swapping phones. Or taping his tracker on the bumper of that car that’s pulling out.

  14. BL May 21, 2014 at 1:24 pm #

    Ben has become a computer geek who has re-programmed Pocket Nanny so mommy is zapped into unconciousness whenever he leaves the zone.

  15. bmj2k May 21, 2014 at 1:27 pm #

    Aside from the fact that it is the most amateurish ad I’ve ever seen- could they get a more creepy and inept narrator? what that parent really wants is an electronic fence, like they use on dogs. That way if her son tries to leave the property he’ll get an electric shock. That’ll teach him to be a kid!

  16. Backroads May 21, 2014 at 1:27 pm #

    <>

    Maria’s eyes tell her Ben is twenty feet away. But Pocket Nanny tells her he has been kidnapped by a Man with a Van. Who should Maria trust?

  17. Backroads May 21, 2014 at 1:28 pm #

    That was in response to Tsu Dho Nimh.

  18. Jenny Islander May 21, 2014 at 1:34 pm #

    I use a phone to track my kids all the time. It works like this:

    *beep-beep-beep-boop-beep-beep-boop*

    “Hello?”

    “Sweetie, it’s 5:45. You have to get home in time to eat dinner before dance class, remember? Can you walk from wherever you are?”

    “Yes, if I start now.”

    “OK, see you in a few minutes.”

    *bip*

  19. fred schueler May 21, 2014 at 1:37 pm #

    our daughter (one of the original ‘Free Range Girls’) e-mails the GPS co-ordinates whenever she makes an important natural history observation.

  20. Vicki Bradley May 21, 2014 at 1:37 pm #

    I completely agree with everyone’s comments, especially that of lollipoplover, who nailed it on the head with her comment about having a conversation with your child regarding boundaries and responsible behaviour. All these gadgets that are designed to externally control a child’s behaviour/actions do not in any way teach him/her self-discipline and the value of internalizing lessons about appropriate behaviour.

  21. BL May 21, 2014 at 1:37 pm #

    @Jenny Islander
    “Sweetie, it’s 5:45″

    Where you are, it’s 5:45.

    When Ben is, it’s 1984.

  22. TaraK May 21, 2014 at 1:42 pm #

    If Ben is autistic, or has another disability and is prone to wander, yes, absolutely necessary. If not, OH MY WORD how annoying a product!

  23. TaraK May 21, 2014 at 1:42 pm #

    And Maria needs to get a grip. Ben is as tall as she is, he’s fine.

  24. Becky May 21, 2014 at 1:59 pm #

    maria is always worried about ben?
    maybe maria needs to stay away from playgrounds near cliffs… :/

  25. John May 21, 2014 at 2:23 pm #

    Wouldn’t merely calling your kid on his or her cell phone to find out where he is and when he’ll be home be just as effective?

  26. Betsy in Michigan May 21, 2014 at 2:25 pm #

    I really would have purchased one of these for my traveling ADHD/Asperger’s son when he was two until around six or so. It would have left us much less exhausted trying to keep him alive. But he’s 8 now – all the neighbors know him, he knows not to go anywhere with anyone, and if he gets away from us or his older sister, they would bring him home when they’re tired of having their ears talked off. This is inappropriate technology for regular kids!

  27. Puzzled May 21, 2014 at 2:26 pm #

    Well, wait a second – what’s the problem? I’ve learned on a previous thread that parents must know where their children are, children are expected to remain in their assigned zones, and children will frequently make mistakes, push boundaries, and so on – and when they do, the parents will be unable to find them in the event of an emergency, which is a serious problem. So why the objection to using technology to accomplish what is wanted?

    As for me, I think it’s a terrible idea. I’m just asking how the scorn directed at this device fits in with comments on previous threads.

  28. Papilio May 21, 2014 at 2:32 pm #

    Maybe it’s for seriously mentally challenged moms who only speak English on the level of a two-year-old…?

  29. Backroads May 21, 2014 at 2:32 pm #

    @Puzzled, I think the discrepancy is that in this case technology is replacing authentic responsibility and trust.

  30. Lisa May 21, 2014 at 2:43 pm #

    I have to say…. I do not feel the need to GPS my child, but I do sometimes wish she had GPS on her cell phone – *I* do, and I use it often. Worried about my kid not being where she’s supposed to be? Not really. Worried about the *phone* not being where it’s supposed to be? Well, I’ve used the “Find My iPhone” app several times myself.

  31. EricS May 21, 2014 at 2:44 pm #

    This is just as bad as the “remote brake” for kid’s bike gadget. What’s hilarious about this app, is the alarm. It’s like the world is ending. lol!

    How about this novel “product”; Teach your kids not to run off without telling you. And if they do go off, make sure they know how far they can go, and that they are still within visual and earshot of you. And best of all…it’s FREE. No batteries required. Always available 24/7. And an upgraded child (smarter, more confident, more self esteem, and much happier) is sure to come out of it, at no extra charge. And as an added bonus…we’ll throw in a stress free day, and chance for you to enjoy your day as well with other parents, at no additional cost. Now THAT’S a bargain! But act now, ignorance is looming. Once it’s set in, this deal will be hard to come by again.

  32. Bernard May 21, 2014 at 2:46 pm #

    This is about as sick as it gets. Mommy hasn’t resolved her own childhood or growing up issues and imposes them on her son. Her son in turn will become dependent (for happiness and security) on an insecure parent who in turn will hover and make sure her son is never capable of independence or the discovery of the greatness of all that the world at large has to offer. At best, he will stay home and play “safely” with his electronic soothers – creating a world of freedom and adventure that is lost to him in the real world. At worst he will become submissive and easily dominated, incapable of handling even the most benign of situations. Who needs an international enemy to invade and destroy our nations. By preparing our children to be incapable of thinking and dealing with life, we are gradually destroying their future and our own environment all by ourselves.

    Thus sayeth the old geezer.

  33. EricS May 21, 2014 at 2:47 pm #

    @Backroads. BINGO! Your classic sweep the issue under the rug, and use a band aid where stitches are needed mindset.

  34. EricS May 21, 2014 at 2:50 pm #

    Is it me, or have the last 2 dumb inventions (this, and the remote brake for kid’s bikes) come from the UK? Just guessing with the english accents. Seems like the UK is quickly following in the heals of the US mentality?

  35. lollipoplover May 21, 2014 at 2:53 pm #

    “Routing4You, a leader in child tracking and family safety and security presents: Pocket-Nanny – a high precision child tracker (GPS Tracker) and playground guard. Almost like a real nanny who takes care of your child.”

    High precision? Playground guard?

    Commercial needs to cue to Maria enjoying a glass of wine with her xanax, finally not worrying. The pocket nanny is taking care of Ben. This nanny is highly rated and guards him from cliffs with high precision.

  36. Harrow May 21, 2014 at 3:19 pm #

    @Puzzled: Perhaps the scorn isn’t so much for the gadget as for the scaremongering film strip advertisement.

  37. marie May 21, 2014 at 3:52 pm #

    Submarine attack? When I heard the Pocket Nanny buzz, I kind of hope it was tasing Maria. :-)

  38. Jennifer Juhasz May 21, 2014 at 4:28 pm #

    And yet – just yesterday – I read in the news that kids don’t get outside nearly enough in our first world countries… gee. wonder why?

    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/why-kids-over-5-arent-doing-enough-physically/article18770171/

  39. Donna May 21, 2014 at 4:41 pm #

    How does pocket nanny help Maria? Unless she is hovering 2 feet away – and can therefore SEE poor Ben and doesn’t need a gadget to tell her where Ben is – she still has to travel to find Ben, and alas Ben has fallen off the cliff before she can get there.

  40. Nadine May 21, 2014 at 5:34 pm #

    I just lost ten IQ points watching that. Time to tie that phone to a rat, cat or dogor dump it in the back of a truck. See mom run!

  41. Warren May 21, 2014 at 5:39 pm #

    My kids would have refused to wear any such device.

    I can see moms sneaking these things into their teens and college kids clothing somehow, to spy on them.

  42. amy May 21, 2014 at 5:41 pm #

    But do not send your childs (sic) to this website to learn spelling or grammar. And do little kids really carry around smart phones??? What about brain cancer?

  43. Jake May 21, 2014 at 6:25 pm #

    Ben leaves his tracker in the play zone, then runs off across the street and gets hit by a car

    See? Even this can’t stop him from getting hurt. So just calm down and have a cup of tea.

  44. BL May 21, 2014 at 6:35 pm #

    @Jennifer Juhasz
    “And yet – just yesterday – I read in the news that kids don’t get outside nearly enough in our first world countries… gee. wonder why?”

    According to the article, parents have ‘outsourced’ physical activity for their children to organized sports and the like.

    There was a link to a related article about a massive increase in knee injuries among under-18s. And most of these occur in …

    (I’m sure I’ve telegraphed this answer)

    … organized sports!

    Or, as I call them, over-organized sports.

  45. lollipoplover May 21, 2014 at 6:48 pm #

    “And do little kids really carry around smart phones???”

    I thought the same thing. Where do they put them while they jump, slide, and run at the playground? Or maybe they’re just playing Minecraft on their phone under the slide and order pizzas delivered with the Papajohns app, who knows.

    Stolen smart phones are a very common crime around here. I think Maria should be more paranoid about sending expensive phones to a playground with an irresponsible kid than where Ben actually goes when he plays. The smart phone is more likely to cause a crime than prevent one.

  46. Bose in St. Peter MN May 21, 2014 at 6:54 pm #

    Remember, the “high precision” of a smartphone’s GPS (and this app requires two phones and their GPS) can only be as good as the phones are. And the satellite signals on a given day, etc., etc.

    Mashable: How accurate is your smartphone’s GPS?

  47. Emily May 21, 2014 at 8:04 pm #

    You guys, the child isn’t meant to have a smartphone–the parent carries the smartphone, while the child wears a sensor. It’s still a monumentally stupid device, but it’s not QUITE as stupid as putting a child on what amounts to house arrest, while also trusting them with a smartphone.

  48. lollipoplover May 21, 2014 at 8:40 pm #

    @Emily-
    “Download the Child App (Android 2.3+) or iOS (4+). Pocket Nanny Child GPS Tracker transform your Android into a premium GPS tracking device”

    The sensor is in the phone. So parent tracks child’s smart phone with their smart phone. I also thought the sensor was like the necklace on Ben in the horrible commercial(and a strangulation risk!) but this app is used on smart phones. More like dumb phones.

  49. Kiwimum May 21, 2014 at 9:18 pm #

    @EricS – sorry, but neither ad involved anything remotely like an English accent. More like European (german/Scandi/Slavic????)

  50. hineata May 21, 2014 at 9:50 pm #

    @Kiwimum- you beat me to it! Definitely not a British accent…. :-)

  51. MartiniMom May 21, 2014 at 10:12 pm #

    I hope pocket nanny will help Ben and his mother both find their noses.

  52. J.T. Wenting May 21, 2014 at 11:29 pm #

    “”Anyway, I don’t know what we’ll do with future felons on house arrest. Giving them an ankle bracelet won’t seem like punishment anymore. It’ll just seem nostalgic! — L”

    opposition to the things is already growing, people wonder why felons are allowed to sit at home drinking beer and receiving friends (who may well be executing the crimes the felon thinks up for him…) without supervision.
    And of course they’re allowed out of that home for a limited time each day to get groceries and stuff…

  53. Paula May 22, 2014 at 6:57 am #

    Ben being more technology savy disables pocket nanny or hides phone at home so he is always in green zone.

  54. anonymous mom May 22, 2014 at 7:46 am #

    @JT Wenting, I assume those objections come from people who have no idea how the legal system works. I’m not aware of any situation under which a person on house arrest is free to do whatever they want as long as they remain at home. Anybody on supervised released, of which house arrested is a (very strict) type, has a long list of rules they have to follow–which at a minimum will likely involve things like no drinking and requiring approved lists of who they can or can’t entertain–and breaking those rules will land them in prison.

  55. Darcy May 22, 2014 at 7:52 am #

    What kind of accent does that narrator have? Is it very, very slow British, or are they just really bad at advertising?

  56. tdr May 22, 2014 at 9:08 am #

    I didn’t see the video (blocked at work), but Miss Manners answers a question about these things today.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/style/miss-manners-limit-smartphone-spy-app-to-family/2014/05/07/bb2ddf22-d208-11e3-9e25-188ebe1fa93b_story.html

  57. marie May 22, 2014 at 10:03 am #

    Miss Manners is brilliant. Always.

  58. Havva May 22, 2014 at 10:39 am #

    Looking at the website for the app is sounds like the designer is nostalgic for when kids were allowed to just go play outside.

    If CPS recognized these tracking apps as sufficient supervision for say 5-11 year olds… (ends at 8 thankfully in my county, but neighboring jurisdictions differ). I would pay for the darn thing. Of course that would just make normal childhood the province of the well-to-do, and exclude the poor. So I still wouldn’t be happy, but it would be nice to just let my daughter walk to school some day like a normal kid in the 80’s.

    The the quote from the designer does sound like a lament for child freedom:
    “Scott (Product Designer):”I came up
    with the design for Pocket Nanny when
    I was hanging out with a friend who is
    also a father,” says Scott. “His son
    wanted to go outside and play, but he
    didn’t knew the area around my house.
    Worst of all, we couldn’t join him
    outside because we were busy cooking
    dinner. His son ended up playing in
    the living room with his iPad, and I
    thought that was sad”.

    With the Pocket Nanny child app this
    can’t happen again. …”

    If only his solution was sufficient in the eyes of busy bodies, cops, nervous parents, and CPS. Of course, I highly doubt it will be until we have mostly won the fight for childhood freedom. Because, as the fear-mongers always reminds us: *SOMETHING* could still happen.

  59. Mama Bear May 22, 2014 at 12:01 pm #

    In the case of my six year old autistic son, something around his neck would be removed in short order due to his sensory issues. There are devices either worn in a velcro bracelet or somewhere on a shoe. Unfortunately, they tend to be expensive and putting sensors in every pair of footwear adds up fast. There are situations where we have to keep him on a short leash (literally). I’ve been investigating getting him a service dog which could be of great benefit, but that too is expensive. Besides, even if the alarm went off like its supposed to, he runs so fast he’d easily be in the next subdivision by the time one of us driving the van caught up with him.

  60. anonymous mom May 22, 2014 at 12:11 pm #

    @Puzzled, I’m honestly confused as to what you think the alternative to rules, boundaries, and agreements about where a child is going is?

    My 4yo was cranky yesterday and wanted to run away. Should I have simply let her out to roam where she pleased, confident that she’d make wise choices?

  61. anonymous mom May 22, 2014 at 12:17 pm #

    @Hawa, the problem I see is that it wouldn’t work that way. Presumably, the ubiquity of cell phones should mean that teens have more freedom than ever before. After all, now their parents can be constantly in contact with them. But, the opposite seems to have happened, and even though parents now have ways to keep in close contact with teens at all times, they are still allowing them fewer freedoms than previous generations without that technology had.

    Because if we’re acting out of irrational fears, technology won’t solve the problem. If you truly believe that your preteen or teen is at serious risk of being kidnapped and murdered by a dangerous predator if you let her walk to school, no precaution will ease your mind, and most will probably just reinforce your fear (you get your 11 year old a phone so you can always be in contact with them lest the worst happen, and you have just made a choice based on and reinforced your irrational belief that the worst is a likely outcome).

    The only solution to irrational fears is to confront them and challenge them, not to hope that new technologies will quell them. I would be willing to bet that kids who had a child tracker would be allowed fewer freedoms than kids without them, even if the creators or even the consumers started out with the opposite intention.

  62. Havva May 22, 2014 at 3:05 pm #

    @ anonymous mom,
    I do in fact agree with you completely on that. I have to admit I am a prone to being a nervous mom. And this would do nothing for my nerves. I’ve learned to let her grow up by looking away as much as reasonable. But if it would give my daughter the freedom in grade school to have a life (like I did), such as walking to school (like I did). I would suck it up and deal.

    Of course as I said, I don’t think either busybodies nor police, nor CPS would accept a kid going to the park or school with this thing. So there is no way I’d put up with any such harmful placebo.

  63. Nicole May 22, 2014 at 3:27 pm #

    Maybe since the pocket Nanny is on a phone it will help the creator of the add learn to spell “With Pocket-Nanny you will see all childs in realtime, even if your childs are in a car.”

    Also I had no idea my phone could protect my children I think I need a super man cover for it! Because a criminal would not think the break the phone or leave it behind.

    LET THE CHILDREN PLAY.

  64. Papilio May 22, 2014 at 5:13 pm #

    Kiwimum, Hineata, Darcy, about the accent: Well it doesn’t sound Dutch, but that hardly narrows it down :-)
    Now I want to find out what accent it could be!

    To me it seems he’s overdoing the s and th (maybe his language doesn’t have a th? Maybe there is a dominant sh, pushing the s forward for more contrast?). It also does sound to me like he’s carefully trying to make it sound British (that would also explain why he’s speaking so slow).
    But for you native speakers it is easier to hear what is “wrong” with it, so what do you hear?
    He says ‘worriet’ rather than ‘worried’, doesn’t he? What else?

  65. Puzzled May 22, 2014 at 10:26 pm #

    Rather than asking me specific questions, I offer this advice – if you want to know what I’d do with a child in a given circumstance, ask yourself what you’d do with an adult in that circumstance. If an adult wanted to leave, under ordinary circumstances you’d let them walk away. On the other hand, you’d restrain them if you believed they were out of their mind in some way. The same distinction makes sense for children. A 4 year old wanting to walk into traffic is similar to the adult who is incapacitated. A 9 year old who decides to go by a different route than the one by the creek is not at all similar to that.

  66. Cari May 23, 2014 at 12:14 am #

    I’ve got 3 boys, there is only 1 of the 3 I would use that for and it happens to be my oldest. Now, let me clarify. My oldest just happens to have Down Syndrome (that seems to come with not only an extra 21st chromosome but also a wandering gene). He’s 20 now and his wandering off has diminished somewhat but there was a time he could get out of the house and be miles away before we located him. At that time I was seriously wanting the GPS tracking shoes so we could find him quicker. My younger two are good about letting me know where they are going and staying within hollering distance if playing in the woods, my oldest never was; however, these days his younger brothers 12 & 14 are willing to take him with them on their adventures after letting me know they are going and make sure everyone returns.

  67. BL May 23, 2014 at 5:31 am #

    @anonymous mom
    “Presumably, the ubiquity of cell phones should mean that teens have more freedom than ever before. After all, now their parents can be constantly in contact with them. But, the opposite seems to have happened”

    Perhaps because, contrary to popular belief, technology doesn’t determine everything that happens. If stupid or evil ideas are prevalent in society, technology will be used for stupid or evil purposes. And vice versa.

  68. Michelle May 23, 2014 at 3:32 pm #

    What’s next? Microchipping your kids?

  69. SOA May 24, 2014 at 10:28 am #

    You guys are incorrect on house arrest. Since my own father was on house arrest at least once or twice that I remember, let me set it straight. My Dad had a bit of a DUI problem and was busted for it more than once. Because he was a wealthy man with a very important respectable job, he was able to get house arrest versus jail time.

    From what I know of his, they allowed him to go to work every day and gave him so much time to get there and gave him about an hour after work to do any errands or grocery shopping he might need to do before he had to be back home added to his regular travel time.

    Then the rest of the time he had to stay in the house or at least within so many feet of the device. I think he was able to go out on the porch. If you left the cops came to check it out and make sure you were still there like you were supposed to be.

    I think he was allowed visitors as long as they were probably not felons. He did not sit at home and drink beer all day. They had him on it so that he could keep his good job that did good things for the community and so he could continue to pay taxes.

    House arrest can actually make sense for people like him. You can allow him to continue to work so he can continue to pay for himself and pay his child support and pay taxes. Or you could lock him up and have to pay for him and lose any potential tax dollars he paid. It seems like a win/win to do it by house arrest for people like him who are high earners.

    He probably was not allowed to drink either since it was a DUI charge, but I doubt they checked up on him. Mostly it is about for when people need to still be allowed to work.

  70. hineata May 25, 2014 at 1:30 am #

    @SOA – such a shame house arrest applies more to people with ‘important, respectable jobs’, then. It would be great if young men and women with lower paid work/less respectable jobs/public defenders rather than flash lawyers, could carry on that work while under house arrest, thus lowering costs to other taxpayers, and keeping them from congregating with each other.

    While its rather off topic, I do find it a shame that there seems to be one type of justice for the ‘rich’ and one for the ‘poor’, in most Western countries I guess. Maybe throughout the world….

  71. SOA May 25, 2014 at 9:02 am #

    hineata: That’s life. I think we all know how the world works. Plus house arrest equipment is not cheap. They may not find it worth it to do all that for someone making minimum wage. Because it requires man power and for the equipment and someone to monitor it. But someone who earns good money can put that money and then some back into the system with taxes.

    I don’t know if my Dad could get away with the DUIs now. They are much more strict with them now then they were back then. Plus he is retired so the going to work thing does not apply. I think he is more careful about driving drunk now plus he has a tee totaler husband to drive him around.

    I have another friend who also got out of two DUIs because of a good lawyer. They made a deal where he went to the Air Force in exchange of fines and jail time. Got off scot free.

  72. Donna May 25, 2014 at 9:04 am #

    hineata – House arrest after conviction is not widely used in my area. It is used predominantly as a condition of bond pending trial or for probation/parole violations.

    It is available to anyone, but it is also pricey. It costs $35-50 per week and requires a home phone line so many of my clients can’t afford it. This is just basic economics. Ankle monitors and 24 hour a day monitoring aren’t free and someone has to pay for them.

    In a true cost-benefit analysis, obviously ankle monitors and monitoring are cheaper than prisons and incarceration so it would make sense for the system to make these items available to low-income people for free. However, the public is not fond of them. Not so much because people on house arrest sit around and drink beer (although many of my clients on them do), but because they provide absolutely no protection for the public from the wearers committing other crimes.

    Unlike Dolly’s assertion, the police do not knock on your door the second you go out of range. The violation gets reported to the monitoring company, who must then notify the DA/probation/parole officer in charge, who must then notify the court, who must then issue a warrant to take you into custody. This takes days, if it is done at all. More likely is that we get into court the next time and probation reports that you violated house arrest X number of times and the judge looks at them like “why wasn’t I notified the first time?” The units are also very prone to failure and extremely easy to just cut off where it would take days to notice that you have absconded.

    So essentially they work great for the Martha Stewarts and Dollys fathers of the world who are basically rule followers anyway, but are completely meaningless for 99% of my clients who are going to do whatever the heck they want to do anyway.

  73. oncefallendotcom May 27, 2014 at 10:27 pm #

    Maria should be more concerned with her breathing because SHE HAS NO NOSE!

  74. twinkles May 29, 2014 at 5:46 pm #

    http://www.att.com/shop/wireless/devices/filip/filip-dragon-green.html#fbid=3qTXguUnGOt

    My friend bought her daughter one of these. Not because she doesn’t trust HER but because she doesn’t trust her ex – who often has her daughter for days/weeks at a time. And on a recent visit, she was unable to reach her daughter for 3 days… didn’t know where she was. Turned out, he’d left her (daughter age 6) with an unknown and questionable babysitter for most of the day while he went out and … At least this way, the kid can call her mom whenever she wants.

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    Track Your Child Like a Felon! : Free Range Kids