MARIETTA, Ga. (WHNT) — The Cobb County Sheriff’s Office is trying out a new tactic in an effort to help keep inmates alive.
Sheriff Craig Owens says he wants to reduce the number of deaths of people in custody. In a press conference held earlier this week, Owens announced the first step in achieving that goal will be equipping high-risk inmates with orange electronic bracelets.
The new device, called “PASS-5B,” will monitor inmates’ vital signs, and will help jail staff quickly identify any inmates experiencing medical issues, the sheriff’s office said.
The bracelets, made by Black Creek Integrated Systems of Alabama, will cost $100 each. Sheriff Owens stated that if the program is effective, he plans to offer the monitoring bracelets to the rest of the inmates.
According to their website, the Cobb County Jail can house up to 3,000 inmates.
During the press conference, Owens confronted the fact of three inmates dying at the facility in the past month. Two were ruled suicides, while the other is still under investigation.
Owens won office in part after attacking and criticizing the number of deaths at the jail under the previous sheriff, Neil Warren.
In referring to the recent deaths, Sheriff Owen said, “I’m not proud of that, but if you look around metro Atlanta, we’re not different than anywhere else. I don’t want one death. One death is too many.”