Magazine article Corrections Forum

D.C. Jail to Fingerprint Visitors, Check for Warrants

Magazine article Corrections Forum

D.C. Jail to Fingerprint Visitors, Check for Warrants

Article excerpt

Washington Examiner

Starting in March, all visitors to the District's jail will undergo a fingerprint scan that will be checked against law enforcement databases for outstanding warrants. The D.C. Department of Corrections is already using the "live scan" fingerprint technology on inmates when they enter and leave the jail, corrections officials said. The digital technology allows the department to take an image of an inmate's fingerprint and check it against D.C. police databases to confirm the inmate's identity.

"Through a $134,000 grant from the [federal] Office of Justice Grants, we will be [using] the technology in our visitors control area to assist [D.C. police] in the identification of individuals with outstanding warrants," DOC spokeswoman Sylvia Lane said. If a match is made, DOC will detain the visitor and contact the police department and the visitor will be taken into custody.

The jail currently only requires that visitors present a valid identification, and names of visitors are not checked against outstanding warrants. By using digital technology, the scanners cut out the traditional ink pad that has come to define fingerprinting over the past century. …

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