Data analysis lays out 10 facts about pre-trial Electronic Monitoring by Cook County Sheriff
Cook County Sheriff Thomas Dart challenges conclusions
- The number of people incarcerated in Cook County Jail or on electronic monitoring has risen 23% since April 2020.
- Over 1,000 people have been on EM in Cook County for a year or more; 78% have been detained for over 3 months.
- Over 74% of the people on electronic monitoring (and in jail) are Black.
- Today, 83% of the people on EM in Cook County had to pay a money bond to leave jail. On average, 67% of people spend over 2 days in jail before getting out on electronic monitoring, threatening their jobs, school, family lives, and more.
- Data suggests that electronic monitoring has no meaningful effect on the likelihood of re-arrests or appearances in court.
The Cook County Sheriff’s Electronic Monitoring Program appears to perpetuate racial disparities in the criminal legal system and destabilize communities without a return for public safety. As Sarah Staudt, Senior Policy Analyst & Staff Attorney for Chicago Appleseed Center for Fair Court and the Chicago Council of Lawyers explains: “In 2021, the budget appropriation for the Sheriff’s Community Corrections Department was $19,542,855 — even though data shows that people on electronic monitoring have the same very low chance of being rearrested while released pretrial as those who are released without electronic monitoring. It’s time we re-evaluate the way Cook County uses pretrial surveillance.”