Map developed for tracking sex offenders

February 6, 2006

Mapping technology is being developed in Texas to help police monitor the real-time movements of registered sex offenders in greater detail.

A team from the Texas A&M University architecture school is working on geographical information systems technology that will help law-enforcement agencies comply with new laws and increase public pressure to keep tabs on potential predators.

The university said in a news release Monday that tracking technology is more complicated than simply strapping an ankle bracelet onto a suspect since individuals are by nature highly mobile and different communities have different laws and boundaries.

The Aggie team has been adding to the capabilities of the system by ranking the risk potential of individual offenders and overlaying their locations with maps that include parks, pools and other locations where kids tend to congregate.

Initial tests during the past year have provided some surprising insights, in particular a disturbing concentration of registered offenders living very near to or inside designated exclusion zones.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

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