As this issue of the eNews was being prepared, Texas politicians and prison authorities were trying to sort out the dilemma of jamming illegal phone calls by incarcerated felons without running afoul of the 1934 federal law that bans interference with radio signals. Earlier this year, officials in South Carolina had conducted a successful test of a jamming device that apparently stemmed any cell phone communication from within prison walls while causing no interference to cell phone communications nearby or to any other electronics. Texas officials had hoped to conduct a similar test on Thursday, December 18, but cancelled the testing after receiving mixed messages from the Federal Communications Commission about the legality of such an experiment.
The miniaturization of telephone communications may be a welcome convenience to the population at large, but has proven a nightmare for prison officials. Easily smuggled, these tiny devices have also allowed felons the “convenience” of running their drug rings or other nefarious activities from behind bars. In one particularly egregious incident, a Texas state legislator received a threatening phone call from a death row inmate. Not surprisingly, he is now urging the necessity of using jammers.
To learn more about the technology causing this controversy, visit manufacturer CellAntenna’s website.