Investigation Reveals Gaps In Tracking Parolees

Sep 23, 2013

Credit flickr / mikecogh / Creative Commons

Illinois' system for tracking parolees is coming under fire. The Rockford-Register Star investigated the case of an inmate who violated parole and was later charged with attempted murder. 

RRSTAR: How Parolee Jerome Pruitt Fell Through The Cracks

Jerome Pruitt served half of his six-year sentence for a drug violation. He was paroled to Chicago, but somehow ended up in Rockford, even though he was denied a request to live there.  The investigation uncovered problems with how the state monitors parolees. The newspaper found Pruitt's case file included misspelled names, conflicting records of where he lived, and confusion about when he was released from prison. In Rockford, Pruitt was arrested for alleged crimes including attempted murder. A corrections spokesman says the department tries to notify local authorities of a parolee's whereabouts.

Developing An Improved Database

The Rockford Police Department recently received a $400,000 grant to collaborate with the Illinois Department of Corrections and several county service providers to develop a database that would allow the corrections department to push parolee info to the Rockford Police Department in advance of a parolees’ re-entry.  A spokesman for the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority tells WNIJ with this information, Rockford police could arrange for local services for ex-offenders reentering the community. The Rockford Police Department and IDOC are expected to complete the project by September 30, 2013.

The Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority is requiring use of national system integration models, Global Reference Architecture & NIEM, to ensure that the system can be reused for replication and data exchange and perhaps become a statewide initiative.