Elmore County taking over Public Defenders Office?

Friday, February 7, 2020

The Elmore County Board of Commissioners held a special meeting Friday, January 31st to have a discussion with Defense Attorney, Terry Ratliff, who currently holds the Public Defenderís Office contract. They also discussed other items of County business that had come up during the week.

With a growing population comes increased crime, and Elmore County's filings and case load numbers are reflective of that.

What's most concerning to the Board of Commissioners is the number of cases needing conflict council that have gone through the roof the last few years. They are wondering if there's a single event that happened which caused the sudden and steady increase. Ratliff informed them the change came with changes in the prosecution. According to him, Prosecutors are simply charging more felonies.

Commissioner Bud Corbus asked Ratliff why he thought it had become such a huge problem. Ratliff said "they're" not doing the work. That someone (a suspect) has to "own" the dope. With a group of criminals arrested together, for example, detectives would normally separate the individuals and figure out through proper questioning who owned the dope. Then, appropriate charges can be assigned. For the full story, pick up a copy of the Mountain Home News or click on this link to subscribe to the newspaper's online edition.

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