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Family and domestic violence offenders face GPS tracking

Electronic monitoring of family and domestic violence offenders is now under way in Western Australia to strengthen protections for victims and the community.

The two-year trial launched today involves GPS tracking of up to 100 high-risk offenders who have breached a family violence restraining orderand committed a further act of family violence.

The Department of Justice and the WA Police Force will jointly run the trial from the WAPF State Operations Command Centre.

To support the trial, the funding provides an additional 15 Adult Community Corrections staff and makes available two police officers at any time, 100 new GPS monitoring devices and increased rehabilitation treatment for offenders subject to tracking.

Offenders wear the electronic device attached to an ankle bracelet, which will set off an alert if they enter an exclusion zone – for example, near the victim’s suburb – or if there is an attempt to tamper with the device.

In these instances, Adult Community Corrections officers would make a swift and appropriate response in consultation with dedicated police officers, including police attendance in certain high-risk situations.

The Commissioner for Victims of Crime will provide ongoing support to the victims of these offenders during the trial.

The trial is part of a $52.3 million expansion of electronic monitoring in the justice system by the McGowan Labor Government.

The launch follows the passage of the most comprehensive family violence law reform package ever seen in WA in June, and the introduction of online applications for restraining orders and increased penalties for the offenders who breach them.