In 1977, a Judge in New Mexico read a Spider-man comic where the villain Kingpin was tracking Spider-Man thanks to a wrist-worn electronic bracelet. The Judge, who was a district court judge, thought that maybe this technology would also work in real life. 

A few years later, the product was introduced. The judge had contracted with a computer salesman to develop the technology. 6 years later, in 1983, the device started testing in New Mexico. The early success led to the adoption in Florida a couple of years later. The success of both of these tests led to national adoption.