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New Mexico jail looks to iris recognition for inmate identification

The Chief of the Metropolitan Detention Center in New Mexico is in the process of procuring biometric iris recognition technology to ensure the correct identity of inmates being booked into and released from the jail. The jail mistakenly released a wrong inmate earlier this month.

The escaped inmate was wearing his cellmate’s wristband, groomed his facial hair to resemble the cellmate and memorized the cellmate’s personal information.

“A wrongful release like this, one is enough,” according to Chief Greg Rees. “If we don’t learn something from this, if we don’t change something from this, then the second one is our fault.”

The county is in the procurement process for the scanning system, the Albuquerque Journal reports. The Chief said the equipment will cost the county less than $20,000 a year and could be up and running as early as next month.

Last month it was reported that Scotland’s national police are considering implementing iris recognition technology to reduce paperwork and help identify “repeat visitors”.