OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. – Oklahoma’s governor has signed a controversial bill into law calling for the early release of state prisoners. But there’s a catch — those qualified for early release will be required to wear a global positioning satellite (search) system ankle bracelet at all times.
Although the law could save taxpayers $10 million, opponents say the bill is too soft on crime.
“The encouragement to have criminals not commit a crime is to keep them in jail for the entire time the judge imposes,” said Oklahoma state Sen. Cliff Branon (search), a Republican. “Have them serve their entire sentence.”
Other opponents say the plan undermines the whole deterrent factor of imposing a prison sentence in the first place.
Inmates who qualify for the GPS early-release program are non-violent offenders; they are convicted for crimes like drug trafficking and burglary. They must also have 11 months or less of their sentence left and must be eligible for being transferred to a halfway house.
Prisoners will have to wear the GPS ankle bracelet 24 hours a day for the duration of their sentence or they go back to prison. Department of Corrections workers will track the criminals via computers 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
Click here to watch a report by Fox News' Phil Keating.