Local News

Probation officers get online to track offenders

Posted December 10, 2008

— A new online tool will help probation officers save time and keep track of offenders.

The Web-based application, which went online Oct. 29, alerts probation officers when an offender in their caseload is arrested or convicted and when a warrant or order for arrest is issued, Department of Correction spokesman Keith Acree said in a news release.

Starting Jan. 1, all probation officers in the state will be required to use it.

“It has been a long time coming. We are happy it is here,” Chief of Support Services Cynthia Williams said.

Officers can also review their entire caseload and see which offenders have been arrested or convicted since the previous day, he said.

Cindy Cousins, an applications systems manager with the department, said the program will help “make sure nothing slips through the cracks.”

The $75,000 program comes as state officials are working to fix problems brought to light in the wake of the slayings earlier this year of Duke University graduate student Abhijit Mahato and University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill senior Eve Carson.

Suspects in both those shootings were on probation at the time of the crimes. An internal investigation into their cases found the suspects whom the probation system had overlooked, in part, because of heavy caseloads and there not being a central system from which probation officers could obtain court information about offenders.

The online system is connected to arrest and conviction data from the Administrative Office of the Courts, Acree said.


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  • Like that Dec 11, 2008

    This is a start!!! Now lets get some unity among the departments because some of the issues lie within the individual departments willingness to assist each other and work together for the main goal of keeping the general public safe.

  • Dr. Dataclerk Dec 11, 2008

    If parents don't watch their young children, the molesters will find a way to get near them. Scary, I know - but it is the truth.

  • Calico7 Dec 11, 2008

    I believe the Probation system would function better if Probation and Parole worked within the Administrative offices of the Courts. Forms that are used for sentencing and conditions of Probation are AOC forms. The Judge sentences and the Judge modifies, revokes, or continues on probation if the offender violates. Probation would seem to work better if it remained within the Judical/Court Family.

    I don't think we would have this mess if the Judges were accountable for violent probationers and violaters of probation in the communities. Many of these probationers need to be in Prison. DOC ain't working for the offenders/probationers on our streets.

  • 8675309-9 Dec 11, 2008

    houndsforme - An eye for an eye will make the whole world blind

  • no contest Dec 11, 2008

    If you voted to put people in office that let things like this happen then it is your fault too. This state has been controlled by one party for so long that they just do not care. So keep voting for judges and people that promise everything and deliver this type of junk.

  • houndsforme Dec 11, 2008

    I got a better idea. $75,000 in .22 cal bullets and you won't need probation officers or a probation monitoring system.

  • scarletindurham Dec 11, 2008

    this all seems very "duh" to me.

  • Ol Forrester Dec 11, 2008

    This system will only be as good as the data entered. If it's not timely, the perp will make bail and walk before the PO comes into the office. Still, it's better than nothing, which is what they had. How many lives could have been saved if they spent the $75,000 a year ago? two years ago?

  • Tolip Dec 11, 2008

    The current administration of most of the State Departments, DOT, HHS, and this probation mess all border IMHO, on criminal negligence!

    Is there a NC State Department of ANYTHING which is not corrupt or totally inept?

    "An we voted fer change" All I see changing is who is warming the top seat!


  • ConcernedNCC Dec 11, 2008

    It's a shame people have to die before anything is done to correct problems that they've known about for years.