Sunday, July 22, 2018

Court Recommends Electronic Monitoring For Woman Accused Of Escaping Electronic Monitoring

Regina Whitaker allegedly found a way to make her home monitoring system mobile: plug it into a car outlet. | CPD
So, what is an appropriate bail for a five-time convicted felon who’s caught roaming the city with her electronic monitoring bracelet plugged into a car outlet? In Cook County, the answer was….electronic monitoring!

Fortunately, a judge exercised some discretion over the system’s recommendation.

Here’s what happened:

Back in March, 28-year-old Regina Whitaker was released from prison after serving half of a narcotics sentence. She was put on electronic monitoring as part of her parole plan.

On the Fourth of July, she was arrested and charged with selling crack cocaine to an undercover cop on the West Side. Judge Stephanie Miller released Whitaker on a recognizance bond and told her to stay inside from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m.

Then, around 9:30 p.m. on July 13, police stopped a vehicle on the West Side for having an apparently altered temporary license plate. Officers approached the car. Regina Whitaker was in the driver’s seat with her home monitoring device (the part that is supposed to be, you know, at home) sitting on the passenger seat, plugged into the car outlet, according to a police department spokesperson.

She was arrested and subsequently charged with escape and having a false, stolen, or altered temporary permit.

When Whitaker appeared before Judge Mary Marubio on the escape charged last Saturday, the court’s Pretrial Services Division was prepared with a recommended bail: electronic monitoring. Again.

Marubio seemed to give that a brief consideration before ordering Whitaker held without bail.

The car outlet workaround is a popular scheme among Cook County’s electronic monitoring crowd.

In late March, a twice-convicted felon who was on parole was arrested on the Magnificent Mile with his home electronic monitoring system plugged into a car’s charger outlet, police said.

Kentreal Brisco allegedly had a 27-year-old man’s stolen cell phone with him and he was demanding $500 cash to give it back when cops reported finding Brisco's electronic monitoring device plugged into the car outlet.

Briscoe received the sort of justice we’re more accustomed to seeing from Cook County: All charges were dropped at his next court hearing.

Editor's note: This story was updated on July 25, 2018.

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