DENVER—Convicted DUI offenders in the state of Michigan are getting a taste of the power and accuracy of continuous alcohol monitoring.
House Arrest Services, Inc., headquartered in Eastpointe, Michigan, is one of the nation’s largest electronic-monitoring service providers, servicing courts throughout Michigan and other states. During 2003, House Arrest Services became the nation’s leading provider of the newest development in the field of alcohol testing—the Secure Continuous Remote Alcohol Monitor™.
SCRAM™, an ankle bracelet system developed and manufactured by Colorado-based Alcohol Monitoring Systems, Inc. (AMS), tests as often as every 30 minutes, around the clock, regardless of the subject’s location. The first alcohol testing system of its kind, over 500 convicted DUI offenders in the state of Michigan wore the SCRAM System during 2003. House Arrest Services conducted more than 600,000 alcohol tests on these offenders with SCRAM, monitoring what the state deems the highest-risk, repeat DUI offenders.
“SCRAM is an entirely new way for us to keep tabs on the DUI offenders who are part of our monitoring program,” says Jon Ugval, director of operations, House Arrest Services. “We can now test these offenders as often as every 30 minutes. They don’t have to be at home, and they don’t have to come to a testing center for testing. SCRAM is automatic, and it’s 24 hours a day.” House Arrest Services works closely with court systems across the state, including Eaton County, Isabella County, St. Clair Shores, Mt. Clemens, Oakland County Community Corrections, Macomb County Community Corrections, Macomb County Circuit Courts and Wayne County Circuit Courts.
House Arrest Services first began BETA testing the SCRAM System in August of 2002, along with state and federal jurisdictions across the country. They became one of the first service providers to use SCRAM when AMSofficially launched the product to the community corrections industry in May of 2003. Ugval anticipates that House Arrest Services will use SCRAM to monitor more than 2,000 offenders by the end of 2004.
SCRAM is the first remote alcohol testing system designed to test subjects 24 hours a day, from any location. Designed specifically for application in community corrections and alcohol treatment programs, SCRAM combines elements of current remote electronic monitoring programs with all-new tamper and alcohol detection technology. Together, these elements are providing what many in the monitoring industry see as the first real, affordable solution to the problem of monitoring repeat, high-risk alcohol offenders.
According to Don White, vice president of Field Operations for AMS, House Arrest Services continues to be at the forefront of the electronic-monitoring services industry. “House Arrest’s ability to embrace and integrate leading-edge technology into their existing monitoring program is why we view this partnership as strategic. With House Arrest’s numbers leading the way (over 500 offenders and 600,000 tests), SCRAM was used to monitor close to 1,000 offenders and conduct over 1.2 million alcohol tests nationwide during 2003. Using traditional testing methods, the same number of offenders in the same period of time would, at best, have been tested once or twice a day,” says White. “We’ve closed the loopholes. And in the process, we’ve streamlined the monitoring function, so our customers can monitor more subjects, more effectively, with fewer resources.”
AMS positions SCRAM as one component in a comprehensive program of sanctions, education, rehabilitation, and punishment. “For repeat alcohol offenders, the bottom-line issue is very often alcohol abuse and addiction,” says White. “By providing an effective way to actually monitor compliance, agencies and treatment providers can quickly identify and intervene with the real problem drinkers.”
About House Arrest Service
House Arrest Services has provided electronic-monitoring services for the criminal justice system since 1986. With active programs in 10 states, including Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin, the company provides risk- and needs-assessment and a full spectrum of monitoring services, including the SCRAM System, RF tethers, GPS tethers, in-home alcohol monitoring, ignition interlock, and vehicle immobilization. House Arrest Services has been featured periodically in the media, including segments on CNN, for the effectiveness of their electronic-monitoring programs.
About Alcohol Monitoring Systems
Established in 1997, Alcohol Monitoring Systems (AMS) manufactures the world’s only non-invasive alcohol-detection system that automatically tests for alcohol every hour, 24 hours a day, regardless of the offender’s location.SCRAM – or Secure Continuous Remote Alcohol Monitor – is the only alcohol-testing technology to use transdermal analysis to determine an offender’s blood alcohol content. SCRAM fully automates the alcohol testing and reporting process, providing community corrections, law enforcement, and treatment organizations nationwide with the ability to classify DUI offenders and assess compliance with sentencing requirements and treatment guidelines. AMS is a privately held company headquartered in Highlands Ranch, Colorado.