A report on North Carolina's probation system suggests that public safety is at risk because the system has either neglected or lost track of thousands of criminals.
The News & Observer of Raleigh reports that since the start of 2000, 580 people have killed in North Carolina while under the watch of state probation officers. That accounts for 17 percent of all convictions for intentional killings.
Documents and interviews show that probation officers lose contact with the people they are required to supervise.
The report's findings, published on Sunday, said probation leaders have failed to take advantage of technology advances, leaving their officers with no automatic tracking of the people under their supervision. Officers often weren't aware when probationers were arrested on new charges.