Last Wednesday, as part of California's effort to save money in the corrections agency, a parole agent removed a GPS tracking device from Lawrence Lamar Jackio, a 20-year-old gang member on parole for burglary.
The next day, Jackio, who is known as "Poopie," allegedly made his way to Palm Grove Drive in Rancho Cordova, where authorities say he took part in a burglary and home invasion that turned into a gunbattle with the homeowner.
By the time it was over, Jackio's alleged partner was shot in the head, the homeowner was wounded in the hip and Jackio had been shot in a leg.
Obviously, this was not the result the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation had hoped for as it began implementing its cost-cutting measures last month.
"The department uses a variety of tools to monitor and supervise individuals who are living in our communities while on parole," corrections spokesman Oscar Hidalgo said in an email response Thursday to questions about the case. "Although effective overall, none of these tools can fully predict or prevent an act of an individual, especially a person that might not have regard for the law.
"There are many successes our parole agents have daily with parolees, but there are still others who make poor choices and must be held accountable for their actions."
Hidalgo said Jackio had his GPS device removed after he was evaluated and found to rank as a "2" on a risk scale of 1 to 4, with 1 being low risk and 4 the highest risk.
Jackio also was employed and had a stable residence, he said, adding that "it's difficult to confirm that somehow the removal of the GPS unit may have led to this individual's actions that particular day."
But Christine Ward, director of the Crime Victims Action Alliance, predicted the case will be the first of many as the state cuts deeply into how it supervises parolees.
"Basically, what the state is doing to save money by putting public safety at risk is ridiculous," Ward said. "Balancing the budget on the backs of victims and law-abiding citizens is not the way to go when trying to come up with a balanced budget."
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