ROCHESTER, N.Y. — The Monroe County Sheriff's Office has new technology that not only better identifies inmates coming into the Monroe County Jail — it also helps make sure the wrong ones don't get out.
When inmates are booked into the jail they are photographed, fingerprinted and now also pass through IRIS, the Inmate Recognition Indentification System. Once an inmate's eyes are scanned, the system enters that information into a national database.
In seconds it can pull up the inmate's previous criminal history from anywhere else in the country where this technology is used. At least 6,500 inmates have been enrolled in the system since it was installed here in September.
"We can see in seconds where this person has been booked. Say for instance in Georgia. That allows booking officers to know where that person needs to go to the secure detention inside, ut also in our treatment plans as we try and get people out of the revolving door of the criminal justice system," said Monroe County Sheriff Todd Baxter (D).
"And when they are released you want to make the right person walks out the door," said Peter Flynn, B12 Technologies co-founder. "This guarantees, Iris Recognition guarantees, the right person will walk out the door. We do this millions of times and we've never had the wrong person walk out the door."
The Sheriff's Office bought eight iris scanners for its facilities.
They cost $65,000 up front and another $11,000 per year to maintain. The money comes from the inmates themselves, through phone calls or other commissary items the inmates buy.