When people are arrested in Hillsborough County, sometimes they are released
on electronic monitoring if the circumstances allow a release under Sec.
907.041 of the Florida Statutes. This procedure was established after
a committee of judges and other members of the criminal justice community
recommended it as a solution, and it’s been in effect since the
In Florida, the Hillsborough County Sheriff has been utilizing an electronic
monitoring pretrial house arrest program since 1993, and since 2004, has
used an active Global Positioning System (GPS) to keep track of offenders
in the pretrial release house arrest program.
The Pretrial House Arrest Program involving the GPS is operated by the
Hillsborough County Sheriff and is for certain qualified individuals,
namely offenders who are released on their own recognizance (ROR) instead
of posting bond, and who are not seen as a threat to the community.
Who is eligible for Pretrial House Arrest Program?
Not everyone is eligible for the Pretrial House Arrest Program. For an
offender to be eligible for the program, the detainee cannot be held with
a bond amount that exceeds $5,000.00 and the individual must have been
in jail for at least 48 hours. They can’t be a flight risk, and
they cannot be a non-resident of Hillsborough County.
If any of the following criteria applies to the detainee, he or she is
excluded from the Pretrial House Arrest Program:
- Someone who qualifies as a sexual offender under Section 943.0435(1)(a)
of the Florida Statutes.
Someone who has ever been convicted of: home-invasion robbery, kidnapping,
sexual battery, kidnapping,
manslaughter, murder, or treason.
Someone with any convictions in the past 10 years for:
arson, aggravated assault or battery, aggravated stalking,
carjacking, arson, robbery, unlawful throwing, or a felony involving a
- An individual who is currently being charged with dangerous crime under
Section 907.041(4)(a) of the Florida Statutes.
- A resident of Hillsborough County in an area that has no cellular service.
- Someone who is not a resident of Hillsborough County.
- An individual with any kind of a detainer.
- An individual whom the Sheriff’s Office believes is an escape risk,
especially if he or she has any history of attempted or successful escapes.
If an individual is excluded from the Pretrial House Arrest Program because
he or she meets any of the criteria listed above, that does not mean they
cannot ask to be accepted into the program.
Under certain circumstances, a judge can consider an offender for the Pretrial
GPS House Arrest Program, even if they are initially excluded. If you
have any questions about this, we encourage you to contact our firm as
soon as possible.
Pretrial GPS House Arrest Program by Court Order
Sometimes an offender will not have sufficient assets to post bond. If
he or she is eligible, the felony pretrial detainee may be released on
their own recognizance by the court and subsequently placed on the Pretrial
House Arrest Program.
If a judge decides to grant an eligible felony detainee ROR with the requirement
that he or she goes on the Pretrial GPS House Arrest Program, it must
be put into a written court order.
An offender cannot be considered for the program if they are not a resident
of Hillsborough County, or if they live in an area that does not allow
cellular service. Why? This is because GPS tracking will not work unless
the area has cellular service.
Do I have to pay for the program?
The good news is that if you are accepted into the Pretrial GPS Program,
you will not have to pay for your participation; there are no fees involved.
However, if you damage the equipment, you will have to pay the replacement costs.
If someone is placed on the program and they violate the terms of their
contract, or if they are deemed a risk to the community, the offender
will be picked up and taken to jail without the need of an arrest warrant
or pick-up order as are usually required in similar situations.
Are you interested in learning more about being released on your own recognizance
and the Pretrial GPS House Arrest Program in Hillsborough County? If so,
contact our Tampa criminal defense firm for a free consultation with a former