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Fla. Cops Chase Offenders Who Cut Off Bracelets

One of the registered sex offenders who cut off his monitoring bracelet and disappeared in Florida this week has turned himself in.

Jimmy James Felder, 37, reported to the St. Lucie County (search) Sheriff's Office Thursday afternoon. On Monday, Felder cut off his monitoring bracelet and threw it in a canal near a northern Fort Pierce elementary school.

Felder had been placed on conditional release Sunday upon completing a sentence for lewd and lascivious assault on a 14-year-old girl in 1992.

Another Florida sex offender, Patrick Bell, is still at large.

On Tuesday, Bell, 39, went to his mother's Palm Beach County (search) apartment, cut off his tracking bracelet and disappeared. Bell is black, 6 feet tall and 211 pounds. He has used the aliases Gregory Belk, Patrick Bell, Patrick W. Bell, Patrick Fountain and Patrick Fountian.

Bell was convicted of a lewd and lascivious act with a child under age 16 and attempted sexual battery of a child under age 12. He was declared a sexual predator by a Palm Beach County judge in 1999.

Larry Wood, a detective from the sheriff's office, told FOX News Bell's mother may have helped him escape to Georgia.

Last week, Charles Phillips, another Florida sexual offender with a violent history, had cut off his monitoring bracelet and fled. He was eventually caught in New York.

All three offenders were wearing bracelets made by Florida-based Pro Tech Monitoring. Wood said that the bracelets were not meant to be a "failsafe."

"These guys are going to take them off if they want to take them off. It's easy to cut off the bracelets," Wood said.

Steve Chapin, Pro Tech's president and CEO, defended his product.

"We incorporated tamper-detection circuitry so when the offender does cut them off we know and can process the alarms and send them out to the law-enforcement agencies. And in the case of these three individuals, that's exactly what happened. The system worked exactly as it's designed to work," Chapin told FOX News.

Wood suggested that Bell, Felder and Phillips could have used more jail time.

"We need tougher sentences to keep these guys in prisons," Wood said. "If we're going to let them out, we need a better system to keep track of these individuals."

Earlier this week, Florida Gov. Jeb Bush signed the Jessica Lunsford Act (search), which requires sexual predators who target young children to served at least 5 years behind bars and be tracked for life once they are out. The law would not apply to the three bracelet-cutters.

The legislation was named for a 9-year-old Homosassa girl who was raped and murdered just 150 yards from her home by John Couey, a convicted sex offender who has been charged in the crimes.