Letters — 16 February 2019
Ankle bracelets for criminals is a good idea

Dear Editor,

I pen tonight with much enthusiasm my endorsement of the concept of “ankle bracelets” being introduced into Belize’s crime situation. This stance and support is based on both technological and security principles coupled with professional and academic experience. It is time for us to stop thinking that “general” policing could address the murderous environment we currently face in the motherland.  We need new and aggressive policies; this suggested remedy is one which I think will be effective.

I refer to a story aired on 7News dated February 11, 2019, titled: “The Future of Law (sic) Enforcement is Ankle Monitors?” I believe the time has come for us to employ technology to control crime in our society. For too long we have been acting like policing and judicial systems are still respected like back in the days when we were growing up, when we could leave our front doors, and by extension our house, open and no one would bother us.

Our system of government has failed us, which warped us to where we are today — no regard for the gift of life. +-As a Belizean (First)/American, I have seen the effectiveness of “ankle bracelets” here in the US. I encourage the Belizean government to implement this policy and practice. In fact, I would suggest that this be implemented not only upon criminals’ release from prison, but also as part of their bail agreement in the courts. It behooves them to do so.

As per the exploratory committee, I am comfortable that they will explore all (im)possibilities, as I have worked with two of the three appointees in my capacity as Information, Communication and Technology (ICT) Director (2013-2016) at the University of Belize. Ms. Haylock and Mrs. Namis are very qualified to analyze the benefits of such undertakings. It is my anticipation that the Government will take their recommendations seriously and proceed on their recommendations.

Some may believe that such a practice imposes on the freedom of movement of those who wear such devices but it is better that we monitor those who have a propensity to criminal behavior than limiting the liberties and free movement of law-abiding citizens. We should not be afraid to go out to the store, or have fun and in more reduced circumstances, come home and be accosted/killed in our driveway.

It is with true hope that I submit this letter, with anticipation that the Government of Belize will implement this concept and not let it go like a CARSI project, which was proposed and denied by the powers that be, some years ago while I was still at UB.

In closing, I anticipate that the recommendations of the exploratory committee assigned to this initiative will be accepted and fully implemented. Incidentally, I was reminded this week of a news item from Belize City Councilor, Micah Gooding, entitled: “CitCo asks police for help with protecting students”.

I recall being a member of an exploratory committee under Mr. Lloyd Enriquez, where, based on his recommendations, CARSI/US Government had approved a project/grant which would have extended beyond what Micah is now requesting.

If not for internal politics at the University, as I recall it, public cameras/monitoring systems would have been implemented from UB’s campus – Faculty of Management and Social Science (FMSS) – West Landivar, through Princess Margaret drive to Central American Boulevard. The endpoint/surveillance center would have been at UB and images forwarded to Queen Street Police Station.

We lost on that project, but let’s not lose on this one. In fact, this idea is urgent for the survival, peace and tranquility of our Belizean citizenry.

Yours in Belizean Safety,

Greg Dominguez
PhD. – (ABD) IT Security and Assurance
[email protected]

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