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Cass County Board: Jail inmates to be tracked electronically

WALKER--Sheriff Tom Burch and Lt. Chris Thompson informed Cass County commissioners Tuesday about three new contracted services the sheriff will use.

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Guardian RFID by Codex Corp. of Maple Grove will charge $16,953 to set up a radio frequency identification system for jail inmates. Image from http://guardianrfid.com

WALKER-Sheriff Tom Burch and Lt. Chris Thompson informed Cass County commissioners Tuesday about three new contracted services the sheriff will use.

Guardian RFID by Codex Corp. of Maple Grove will charge $16,953 to set up a radio frequency identification system for jail inmates.

Inmates wear a wristband. Sensors are placed throughout the jail. This enables jailers to track inmate movements.

The system also enables jailers to record their welfare checks at each inmate's cell and to log medications given or requests for services from inmates electronically, without returning to a desk to record that information on paper. Information is stored in the cloud.

By eliminating jailers' need to return to their desk to make paper records, the records will be more immediate and complete during welfare checks, Thompson explained. It also will minimize lawsuits, because it tracks interactions between jailers and inmates.

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A screen will show what the inmate was doing when he/she was checked and whether or not the inmate took medications offered to them, he added.

The sheriff now will hire Fairline LLC of Coon Rapids and River Falls, Wis., to provide Minnesota licensed peace officers to guard an inmate who has to be held in a hospital. Cost will be $35 per hour for the first week, $30 per hour for the second week and $27 per hour for the third week. Guarding during transportation is $35 per hour.

This will cost less than if a Cass County deputy provided the guard service, Burch said.

The third contracted service will provide inmate canteen and communication services from a kiosk to be placed in the jail.

T.W. Vending Inc., doing business as Turnkey Connections will provide four kiosks. They will track inmate money from booking into the jail to their release. Turnkey will offer soda and candy machines. They will manage inmate email and telephone connections and inmate visitation from people outside the jail.

All visits to inmates are recorded. Recordings are maintained for 90 days. Inmate emails will be kept for four years after the county terminates its contract agreement.

Related Topics: CASS COUNTY BOARDCASS COUNTY JAIL
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