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Federal Probation Journal - September 2001

Federal Probation Journal (September 2001) is dedicated to informing its readers about current thought, research, and practice in corrections and criminal justice. Explore the issue.

This Issue in Brief

Technology Forecast for the Federal Judiciary

By Office of Information Technology, Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts

This article was originally produced as a report by the Office of Information Technology for the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts. A complement to the Long Range Plan for Information Technology in the Federal Judiciary, it reviews major trends that represent opportunities for the judiciary to invest in and exploit technology to improve business processes.

Supervising the Cyber Criminal

By Brian J. Kelly

For U.S. probation officers, increased prosecution of cybercrime will mean preparing for the special demands of efficiently investigating and supervising these offenders and providing the court with understandable and accurate information about them. The author, a cybercrime specialist in New York, describes techniques and software programs that his district has successfully used.

Cyber Crime and the Courts—Investigating and Supervising the Information Age Offender

By Lanny L. Newville

The author presents a review of trends and the growth of computer crime in the federal courts, examining the impact of “high-tech” defendants/offenders on the system, and proposing methods to enhance effectiveness of investigation and supervision. He advocates instituting training programs and regional computer forensics labs to serve as resources for the Courts to assist in the monitoring and supervision of defendants charged with computer-related crimes.

Computer Crime in the 21st Century and Its Effect on the Probation Officer

By Arthur L. Bowker, Gregory B. Thompson

The computer is becoming both a beneficial aid to law enforcement and the tool of choice for a new generation of offenders. The authors suggest investigative techniques and possible special conditions for computer offenders, and mention what steps the U.S. Sentencing Commission has taken regarding the guidelines and computer offenders.


By Timothy P. Cadigan

On April 1, 2001, the federal judiciary began implementing the Probation and Pretrial Services Automated Case Tracking-Electronic Case Management System (PACTSECM). This article considers the implications of the changeover to this new system, including the course of implementation, potential benefits, and the possible future potential.

The Chief as a Technology Manager

By Michael E. Siegel, Elaine Terenzi

Probation and pretrial services chiefs will find in technological innovations compelling benefits, but also sobering difficulties in synthesizing them and the people who are to use them into a seamless system. The authors focus on the efficiencies offered by computers and especially handheld computing systems. They also look at the special challenges of managing technical professionals in a way that will make best use of their abilities.

Pagers, Digital Audio, and Kiosk—Officer Assistants

By Thomas G. Ogden, Cary Horrocks

To help officers spend their time and effort efficiently in an era demanding increasing “field time,” the district of Utah has successfully experimented with pagers and digital audio to increase offender contact. Next in line for implementation is kiosks, which offenders can visit to both receive information from officers and send information.

Remote Location Monitoring—A Supervision Strategy to Enhance Risk Control

By Darren Gowen

This article explores cost-effective solutions to the perennial challenge in community corrections to be both effective and efficient. Remote supervision technologies offer a reliable tool for monitoring compliance with location restrictions of all kinds–particular remote technological applications can be tailored on a case-by-case basis.

Reducing Alcohol-Related Crime Electronically

By Kirby Phillips

Electronic alcohol monitoring technology has been used as a deterrent to alcohol consumption for several years, but a new more cost-effective and reliable technology makes reliable 24-hour monitoring possible. The author describes it and suggests how it can be incorporated into the rehabilitation and policing of offenders sentenced to abstain from alcohol consumption.

Interactive Video Training for Firearms Safety

By Timothy M. Scharr

Many law enforcement agencies, including probation and pretrial services offices, are using interactive video training, or a Firearms Training System (FATS), to enhance their officers’ ability to handle hazardous incidents. The author describes such a training program conducted in the Eastern District of Missouri last year, and analyzes the officers’ response.

Criminal Justice and the IT Revolution

By Terence Dunworth

Although the Information Technology revolution promises an enormous increase in information-processing capability, too few law enforcement agencies currently use that capability effectively. The author examines the impact on the American criminal justice system of the information-processing revolution that has taken place since the invention of the transistor, assessing the opportunities and challenges that this revolution has generated and examining the responses that American law enforcement has made.

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