'Hole in Security,' Not GPS Tracker, May Be at Fault in Alleged NY Slaying, Child Rape


"As soon as the ankle bracelet comes off the ankle, it creates an event. But the pretrial services in Syracuse decided, for some reason, to not make it an alert unless an event persisted for some period of time," he said.

Drake, who helped to conceptualize offender tracking for high-risk offenders when he was with the New Mexico Corrections Department during the 1980s and 1990s, said there were two different signals transmitted when an offender removed or attempted to remove the ankle bracelet -- an event and an alert.

"You define an alert any way an agency wishes to," he said. "So if an individual removes an ankle bracelet, it is an event and it is recorded as an event. It doesn't have to be an alert unless an agency says, 'I want this to be notified as an alert.'

"Let's say it's only an alert if it persists for more than X number of minutes," he said. "It seems to make sense if you're not an expert in this area, but in reality, it's a very bad decision to make because it allows someone to disassemble the bracelet."

Drake said that, in this case, the event may not have been considered an alert for more than a minute.

"That's very dangerous protocol because it allows for this to happen," he said. "So it's not a matter of the equipment failing. The equipment did exactly what it was supposed to do.'"

Drake, who said he has worn and tested the ankle monitor Renz was wearing -- the BI ExacuTrack One -- said he had never received an indicator of a false alert when testing the technology.

"It's as secure as any device on the marketplace," he said. "In fact, it has some features that other devices don't."

Drake said regardless of the manufacturer, it is not difficult to put together and take apart a monitoring device, especially if you witness a demonstration.

"If you watched me put a device on your ankle and saw how it was put together, you don't have to be a genius to take it off," he said. "I'm sure I can do that in 15 seconds, and almost anybody could."

Drake said if the bracelet is fit properly, it could not be slid off the heel or removed from the ankle without taking it apart.

When you take the ankle bracelet off, "you're damaging all the attachment components," Drake said.

"There are pins and clips and buckles, and things like that," he said. "When you take it off, you're going to leave some visible marks of tampering."

Brown said he could not comment on the condition the tracker was in when it was found, as it was part of the ongoing investigation.

Renz is in custody at Onondaga County Justice Center.

"There was a hole in the security fence and someone found it and walked right through it," Drake said. "They should close that hole."

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