Joe Arpaio's Jails Now a Little Harder to Escape: Fingerprints Required for Release

Categories: Lockup, News
alcatraz-cells.jpg
Joseph Kranak via Flickr
Alcatraz was a little harder to escape than Arpaio's joints, history tells us.


One proven method of escaping Sheriff Joe Arpaio's jails has been corrected.

At least one inmate proved that all you need is to switch wristbands with someone who is supposed to be released, pretend you're that person, and walk out the door, but it looks like that might not work anymore.

See also:
-Rocky Marquez Arrested in Mexico, After Second Jail Escape

The difficult part of that plan, of course, is that you need to convince someone that they should stay in jail, rather than taste freedom.

That won't work any longer, unless the inmate also brings the person's index finger with them.

According to a press release from a company called MorphoTrak, Inc., a "biometric identity management company," Maricopa County has purchased one of its products, BIOGUARD, to be used in Arpaio's jails.
With BIOGUARD, the offender intake procedure includes capturing two of the individual's fingerprints (usually the index fingers) on an optical fingerprint capture device from MorphoTrak and entering them into a database. Later, when the individual is released, the fingerprints are again checked. The fingerprint reader scans the finger, and within less than one second, the system determines if the person is who he says he is. If the prints match, the system displays a photograph of the inmate for a visual confirmation of identity.
This became an issue in May 2012, when an inmate named Rocky Marquez was able to walk out of the Lower Buckeye Jail, who was supposed to remain in jail until his trial on charges of perjury, forgery, witness tampering, DUI, misconduct involving weapons, and leaving the scene of an accident.

Marquez switched ID wristbands with another inmate, and while the wristbands have pictures, it's kind of hard to tell exactly whose picture it is, since it's small enough to fit on a wristband.

Marquez somehow convinced the inmate to switch identities with him, even though the other inmate had his bond posted and was all set to walk out the door himself -- legally.

MCSO's security measures for the wristband system included having an inmate give a detention officer some random, personal information to prove they are who they say.

That system apparently didn't work too well, as Marquez was able to get out. Marquez proceeded to make many people's lives a lot more difficult.

The U.S. Marshals Service was again hunting for one of Arpaio's inmates, and tracked him down near Detroit in January.

While in the Wayne County, Michigan jail, waiting to be extradited back to Maricopa County, Marquez pulled the same gag on those detention officers, and walked out the door of that jail, too.

Thanks to Marquez, there's now a fingerprint-ID system in the jails.

This will undoubtedly lead to a decrease in ID switching, or an increase in index fingers being chopped off in Arpaio's jails.

The press release from MorphoTrak says Maricopa County has the first county-wide system with this product, but it's certainly not this company's first fingerprint-collecting rodeo. From the press release:
MorphoTrak, Inc., a subsidiary of Safran USA, provides biometric and identity management solutions to a broad array of markets in the U.S. including law enforcement, border control, driver licenses, civil identification, and facility/IT security. Reporting to Morpho, Safran's security division, MorphoTrak is part of the world's largest biometric company. Morpho is a leading innovator in large fingerprint identification systems, facial and iris recognition, as well as rapid DNA identification and secure credentials. With over 36 years' experience, Morpho has captured more than 3 billion fingerprints and Morpho products are used by more than 450 government agencies in over 100 countries. MorphoTrak is headquartered near Washington D.C., with major corporate facilities in Anaheim, CA and Federal Way, WA.

Send feedback and tips to the author.
Follow Matthew Hendley on Twitter at @MatthewHendley.



My Voice Nation Help
24 comments
robert_graham
robert_graham

To all you people who cluelessly oppose MCSO's use of fingerprinting technology because you say it's too expenive, maybe an electronic branding iron is the solution.  That is what is used to hot-stamp ID numbers on cattle.

The only cost would be the initial purchase of the device.  Then when each inmate is booked in, their booking number can be stamped on their forehead for identification when they get released.

Pretty funny huh?

OATHKEEPER1958
OATHKEEPER1958

GOOD ON YA SHERIFF!!  THERE WAS A FELLA THAT ESCAPED A WHILE BACK AND LUCKY THE MCSO GOT 'EM BEFORE HE KILLED SOMEONE OR TOOK HIS ILLEGAL ASS BACK TO MEXICO.

whoapardner
whoapardner

I worked on the construction of Joe's jail. It was built with a "state of the art" Iris scanner for both the inmates and employees.Of course they never had that at  nor did anybody escape from the Rock.

nojailforyou1
nojailforyou1

Again MCSO is buying equipment without researching if it will actually fix the problem.  It's been about 5 or 6 years since the county spent a considerable sum optic recognition hardware and software.  The purpose of this high tech, high dollar equipment was the same; to identify inmates. Unfortunately the optical scanning program  disappeared from use at the jails within a year.  I never have heard any results on it other than some costly equipment is sitting around getting dusty.

robert_graham
robert_graham

Why would you find something wrong with this or do you encourage escapes?  Of course you encourage escapes.

shadeaux14
shadeaux14

Just wait, if there's a way to fuck this up, the MCSO will find it

valleynative
valleynative topcommenter

Or they could just look at a full-size copy of the booking photo, but I'm sure this system is more fun to use.


FuckJoeArpaio
FuckJoeArpaio

@robert_graham    BA-WAH HA HA HA here is this is the funniest part 

Perhaps the bitter tenor, racial hatred, and xenophobia exhibited by Bob's compulsive posting is explained by the fact that Bob has never even came close to achieving the incredible personal and professional success that both his father and his younger brother enjoyed -- each of whom earned graduate degrees and had wives and careers that touched many lives. Reading the memorial messages left for John and Jim by their friends, colleagues and students, it is clear that they were both deeply loved and mourned by many people at their passing. The heartfelt messages speak to a lives well lived.

Contrast John's and Jim's very meaningful lives with the sad existence of one Robert J. Graham, aka JoeArpaioFan. They had it all, while little Bobby spends countless lonely hours in his tiny hovel toiling away on a keyboard deluded in the belief he wields influence upon the world. I, for one, only derive entertainment from this sad, dim-witted racist, bigot with no comprehension of the bill of rights or the laws that govern this great country as he rants like a deranged jester at the court of Phoenix New Times.


FuckJoeArpaio
FuckJoeArpaio

@robert_graham    Wasting money in government is nothing new.  Neither is stupidity, like your comment about stamping forheads.  I did see something very funny this morning on the page about the zilionth time Shurf Joe has been threatened. Somebody posted your life story. 

That is pretty funny, huh?

danzigsdaddy
danzigsdaddy topcommenter

@HILLFOLKREDNECK  actually it wasnt MCSO that got him, it was the Marshals, MCSO lost him.....................................do you want that $10 for a new keyboard now? (i made it $10 so you would have $2 left over and could buy yourself and your wife something off the McDonalds dollar menu)

valleynative
valleynative topcommenter

@robert_graham  

Preventing escapes is very definitely a good thing.   Using an electronic fingerprint system isn't really about preventing escapes.  There are much more cost-effective ways of doing that.

This is about (a) taking advantage of a serious human error to buy cool toys, and (b) hiring people who can't be trusted to use good judgment, and pushing the decision-making off onto expensive technology, instead.


phxjustice
phxjustice

@valleynative Sheriff Arpaio wasn't able to get more press by going old school and wouldn't qualify for kick-backs.

WhoKnows
WhoKnows topcommenter

@valleynative Pictures are so 1980's and cost so little.  They needed expensive and high tech stuff.  I wonder if Henderbimp is tied to this company, like he was to the facial recognition company the pushed in Honduras! (Hummingbird Systems, IIRC)

robert_graham
robert_graham

@danzigsdaddy @HILLFOLKREDNECK I see the marshals are involved in all sorts of things these days that are not federal. Since that's the case then there is no reason why Arpaio cannot be involved in enforcing federal immigration law.

robert_graham
robert_graham

@valleynative @robert_graham Well then, what's your better solution - asking them their name and expecting them to give an honest answer?

You're an idiot.  Fingerprinting methods are in use by just about every other jail ationwide for release purposes. Are you opposed to them using it too or just MCSO?

danzigsdaddy
danzigsdaddy topcommenter

@valleynative wow..........i mean it, wow.........that is one damn fine post. whether or not other people agree with it, i think it is a very accurate assessment.

valleynative
valleynative topcommenter

@robert_graham

"Fingerprinting methods" are fine.  An expensive electronic fingerprint database is not needed.   My solution, as I posted earlier, is, in part,  to look at the booking photos, the way every other jail nationwide does, instead of relying on wrist bands.

danzigsdaddy
danzigsdaddy topcommenter

@robert_graham needless money spent is what I oppose. when they arrest those people they are also noting tattoo's , birthmarks, scars and other identifying marks. since they have the file up on the person being released a cost effective way of checking them would be to verify any of those things. another one would be random questions as to the persons arrest info or info they have on the person already. for those without identifying marks there could be personal info questions that are asked and verified. there are many cost effective ways of verifying with out buying a whole new system, one of them would be to use the retinal scan system they already had purchased. since they  already own it why not use it?

robert_graham
robert_graham

@danzigsdaddy You're an idiot. I suppose you oppose all the other counties use of it too.

Anything to blast MCSO, right?

Now Trending

Phoenix Concert Tickets

From the Vault

 

Loading...