Editorial for October 12: Right idea, wrong approach

The idea with attaching electronic
monitors to the ankles of people released on police bail was to assist the
RCIPS in keeping track of people who have various curfew conditions applied to
their release.

Prior to the electronic monitors,
police might not have known if someone was adhering to curfew conditions. So,
the use of electronic monitors to keep an eye on suspects who receive police
bail does make sense and we believe it should continue. However, we feel the
monitoring needs to involve some form of outside, independent review on a
continual basis to ensure it is not being abused by law enforcement.

Attaching an electronic monitor to
the ankle of someone who has not even been charged with a crime – much less
convicted of one – is extremely invasive to that individual. By law, police can
only hold someone in custody without charge for eight days in Cayman and only
four days without gaining the permission of a court. But police need no one’s
permission before slapping a monitor on someone’s ankle for 90 days while
awaiting evidence to come back from a lab. There is not even an established
policy within the police service to specifically dictate when, where or how
these monitors are to be implemented. The use of electronic monitors for
suspects on police bail is decided on a case-by-case basis.

Another way of saying that is that
the RCIPS can make up the rules.       

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