Several defendants had a harsh day in the 18th Judicial District Court on Wednesday, Oct. 7.
Rufus Manley McGuffrey, who was taken to court on a driving while intoxicated charge received an unusual sentence.
McGuffrey, who was facing his third or more DWI offense, told the court that he was not currently operating a vehicle. In lieu of an Interlock System on his vehicle, District Attorney Dale Hanna asked the judge to place a Secure Continuous Remote Alcohol Monitor (SCRAM) bracelet on McGuffrey.
“Sometimes we do those on people in alcohol-related cases when they are not driving,” assistant district attorney Paul Hable said.
The SCRAM, which is a continuous alcohol monitoring (CAM) product, was introduced in 2003 and has been used for the last six years to monitor offenders. Hable said the district attorney’s office has been using the system for nearly five years to monitor subjects.
On the system, defendants cannot drink or do drugs and they are required to pay for the bracelet, usually in monthly installments.
According to alcoholmonitoring.com, the SCRAM bracelet “is attached to the offender with a durable and tamper-proof strap.” The bracelet is worn 24-hours per day during the court-ordered time period and takes samples from the offender every 30 minutes.
“Twice an hour, the bracelet captures transdermal alcohol readings by sampling the insensible perspiration collected from the air above the skin,” the Web site states.
“The bracelet stores the data and, at pre-determined intervals, transmits it via a wireless radio-frequency (RF) signal to the SCRAM modem.”
The bracelet is tamper- and water-resistant and provides date and time-stamp readings, which allow for easy analysis of the subject’s consumption.
Alcoholmonitoring.com estimates that in the past six years, the SCRAM bracelet has monitored nearly 100,000 offenders.
A second alcohol offender Clifton Bise, whose blood alcohol level was .077 percent shortly before court, received an Interlock system on his vehicle and his bond was found insufficient and raised from $15,000 to $30,000.
Kevin Jefferson Hicks, who had been on probation since 2004 and violated it, chose to revoke his probation and will serve nine years in Texas Department of Corrections. His time will also run concurrently with a charge out of Ellis County and he will receive 1,211 days credit for time already served.
Ricky Don Hankins, charged with failing to register as a sex offender for life/annually and an unlawful possession of a firearm, chose to go to trial.
“My client has advised me he wants to go forward to trial,” his