By Bill Rankin . . . The Georgia Supreme Court on Monday struck down a law requiring dangerous sexual predators who have completed their sentences to wear electronic monitors for the rest of their lives.
The requirement violates the Fourth Amendment’s protection against unreasonable searches, Chief Justice Harold Melton wrote for a unanimous court.
If a dangerous sexual predator were still on probation, the outcome could be different, the court said. That’s because such an offender who is still under a criminal sentence has a diminished expectation of privacy.
But offenders who have served all their time in prison and completed their probation should not have to attach an electronic monitoring device on their bodies so law enforcement can look for evidence of a crime against them without a warrant, the court said.
Collecting information about an individual 24 hours a day and seven days a week “constitutes a significant intrusion upon the privacy of the individual being monitored,” Melton wrote. It is “patently unreasonable,” the chief justice added.