Local News

Durham seeks to clear backlog of unserved warrants

Posted June 10, 2008 2:08 p.m. EDT
Updated June 10, 2008 3:50 p.m. EDT

— City and county officials have agreed to create a central warrant office and hire people to clear a backlog of unserved arrest warrants.

An estimated 50,000 to 60,000 arrest warrants have been issued but haven't been served in Durham and Durham County, officials said, and the backlog grows by about 9,000 warrants a year.

A plan agreed to by the Durham City Council and Durham County Board of Commissioners would create a central office for police,  deputies, magistrates and court clerks to access the same system. Eight clerks, including four new positions, would staff the office, and eight deputies, including four new positions, would be dedicated to serving warrants.

The city and county would split the $485,000 cost of the upgrades.

Both boards are expected to formally approve the plan in September, which would allow the central warrant office to begin operating by December or January, officials said.

The Durham County District Attorney’s Office also is trying to reduce the warrant backlog by looking at old misdemeanor warrants for possible dismissals, officials said.