Tarrant County To Use Cite & Release For Some Crimes

(Tarrant County, TX) – An individual detained by the police for sure low-level, misdemeanor crimes in Tarrant County could now be issued a quotation, as an alternative of being instantly arrested.

The change is a part of a legislation referred to as Cite and Launch that was handed by the Texas Legislature in 2007. Beneath the legislation, a defendant charged with some Class A and B misdemeanor offenses is eligible for a quotation, slightly than an instantaneous arrest. Tarrant County Legislation Enforcement Executives, Tarrant County magistrates and the Legal District Legal professional’s Workplace labored collectively in current months to find out how will probably be carried out.

“The seek for enchancment within the legal justice system is a continuous course of. Police, prosecutors and courts all the time search to enhance the equity, accuracy and velocity of the system which advantages all stakeholders, together with the accused,” Azle Police Chief Rick Pippins mentioned.

Right here’s the way it works: Officers challenge a quotation to seem earlier than Tarrant County magistrates on a sure date, as an alternative of creating an instantaneous arrest. When the offender seems, the Justice of the Peace notifies the legislation enforcement company that wrote the quotation. The legislation enforcement company then recordsdata the case with the DA’s Workplace for prosecution.

Not Each Company In Tarrant County Could Select to Use Cite and Launch

“Offenders who obtain a quotation will nonetheless have their instances filed with the DA’s workplace. Tarrant County has 41 municipal legislation enforcement companies. Not each company could select to make use of Cite and Launch,” mentioned Chief Cody Phillips, Metropolis o fHaltom Metropolis Police Division and president of the Tarrant County Legislation Enforcement Executives Affiliation.

“A custodial arrest just isn’t all the time the perfect plan of action when making an attempt to steadiness one of the best ways to deal with legal habits. Cite and Launch offers the officer one other device at their discretion to deal with conditions the place a criminal offense has been dedicated however making an arrest just isn’t in the perfect curiosity of justice,” mentioned Dalworthington Gardens Police Chief Greg Petty.

Eligible expenses embrace: Possession of marijuana lower than two ounces; possession of marijuana between two and 4 ounces; possession of managed substance in penalty group 2A lower than two ounces; possession of managed substance in penalty group 2A between two and 4 ounces; legal mischief if the quantity of loss is between $100 and $750; graffiti if the quantity of loss is between $100 and $2,500; and theft if the worth stolen is between $100 and $750.

“We aren’t dismissing theft or drug instances,” Tarrant County Legal District Legal professional Sharen Wilson mentioned. “That is simply one other option to prosecute these instances effectively.”

Necessities To Be Eligible For Cite & Launch vs. Arrest

To be eligible for a quotation as an alternative of an instantaneous arrest, the offender have to be an grownup who lives in Tarrant County and dedicated the offense in Tarrant County as properly. The offender should have ID adequate to show his or her identification. The offender should not have an impressive warrant for a Class B or greater offense.

Different Texas counties resembling Harris, Dallas, Bexar and Travis have already got begun to make use of Cite and Launch.

“Cite and Launch could present an avenue for officers to deal with extra important requires service,” Sansom Park Police Chief
Carolyn Gilmore mentioned.

“The advantages of Cite and Launch are that it will probably save officers time, jail prices and taxpayer {dollars}, whereas utilizing the prevailing Justice of the Peace and prosecution methods. It’s a win-win for all concerned,” Everman Police Chief Craig Spencer mentioned.

“We imagine will probably be a fantastic alternative to minimize the burdens on each the citizen and officer,” mentioned Fort Value Assistant Police Chief Joseph Sparrow.

“We’ll assist this program by giving officers an extra choice to cite and launch an individual who meets the standards,” mentioned Arlington Police Chief Alexander Jones. “Officers may also nonetheless have discretion on whether or not to arrest the particular person and produce them to jail or area launch them by way of this new program for sure qualifying misdemeanors.”

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