In an effort to reduce incarceration costs, the city of San Luis, Arizona is considering having some misdemeanor offenders serve their sentences in the relative comfort of their own home. The move seems to be a win-win for both parties and would make San Luis Municipal Court the first in a south county to make such a move.
According to the Yuma Sun, the matter is going before the San Luis City Council. Judge Rosendo Morales Jr. says that it would save the city money, give judge’s more latitude in sentencing and allow offenders to maintain employment while serving a sentence.
Home incarceration is not a new phenomenon. However, it has not been used in this matter yet in San Luis.
Qualifying misdemeanor offenders—ones convicted of nonviolent offenses without a lengthy criminal history, will be outfitted with an ankle bracelet that will track their location in relation to their home. If they leave their home aside from going to work or preapproved travel, the bracelet will alert their probation officer that they are in violation.
Another ankle bracelet, that may be used by alcohol offenders, can detect through the skin if someone has been drinking. Abstaining from drugs and alcohol is a frequent probation condition for those accused of DUI and other alcohol-related offenses.
Judge Morales points out that offenders with medical conditions in particular cost the city and county thousands when locked up. Transportation costs and medical staff costs can add up. A home incarceration for these inmates could save the local governments even more.
Also, those people who are allowed to maintain employment while serving their sentence are less likely to reoffend.
When you go to jail, you stand to lose your job. Depending on how long you’ll be locked up, getting fired is a given. But, if you are able to maintain steady employment, your family doesn’t have to suffer and you won’t have the additional burden of financial responsibility on your shoulders.
Throughout Arizona, judges are sentencing more and more people to home incarceration for a variety of reasons. However, not all crimes are eligible. The offense you are charged with and your criminal history will definitely play a role in whether or not you qualify for home incarceration.
If you are facing charges, whether for a drug offense or a serious assault, we may be able to help. Contact our offices today to discuss your case and the legal options available to you.