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Wednesday, August 2, 2006

New State Law Requires KY Jailers to Fingerprint Inmates

From Courier Journal.com: Police say a complete file of fingerprints is invaluable. But because many jailers have not fingerprinted everyone booked at their jails, fewer than half of the more than 300,000 people arrested in Kentucky last year are entered in the state and national databases.

Jailers have said they don't have the time and manpower to do so, even though the state has provided automated Livescan electronic fingerprint equipment to all 74 Kentucky jails.

That changed this month. A state law that took effect July 12 requires jailers to collect and transmit fingerprints from every inmate booked at their jails. Previously, the law wasn't clear as to whether jailers or arresting officers were supposed to take the prints, so in many cases, no one did, officials say.

"We're not equipped for it," said Warren County Jailer Jackie T. Strode, who estimates that he will have to hire up to five more workers to handle all three shifts of booking and fingerprinting. "It's an unfunded mandate that now county taxpayers will have to foot the bill."  Rest of Article. . . [Mark Godsey]

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