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Home detention monitoring fee is outrageous | READER COMMENTARY

Gregory Shields, director of Cook County Sheriff's electronic home monitoring program, shows an electronic ankle bracelet.
Gregory Shields, director of Cook County Sheriff's electronic home monitoring program, shows an electronic ankle bracelet. (Nancy Stone, Chicago Tribune)

It is surprising to discover that the justice system charges an individual $87 a week for home detention monitoring. As the article, “They’ll have their day in Maryland court. But coronavirus means a long wait, big fees for ankle monitoring” (Aug. 28), points out, this can be a significant financial hardship for many awaiting a trial, especially now that COVID-19 has shut down the courts.

Given that the average daily cost to house an inmate in Maryland’s corrections system is listed as $875 a week in 2018 (the most recent data published by the state’s web site, maryland.gov), shouldn’t the state pay the monitoring cost? This appears to be another example where justice is not for all, but for those who can afford to pay for it.

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Richard Ulrich, Glen Arm

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