Office of the Attorney General
Attorney General's Office Launches Electronic Warrant System in the 40th and 57th Judicial Circuits
Attorney General Jack Conway today announced that his office has completed implementation of an electronic warrant management system (eWarrants) in the 40th Judicial Circuit (Clinton, Cumberland and Monroe counties) and the 57th Judicial Circuit (Russell and Wayne counties). This brings to 36 the number of counties that have received the eWarrant system under a $3.9 million American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) grant awarded to the Office of the Attorney General in 2009. With today's announcement, eWarrants is currently operating in 44 Kentucky counties.
Working with local officials in the 40th and 57th judicial circuits, the Office of the Attorney General, in partnership with the Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC), the Kentucky State Police, the Kentucky Office of Homeland Security and Open Portal Solutions, Inc., provided training and support for the new system. The first roll-out under the grant was Oct. 26 in the 53rd Judicial Circuit, comprised of Anderson, Shelby and Spencer counties. The Attorney General's office is working to implement eWarrants in 100 rural counties across the Commonwealth by the end of 2011.
"The strong support we have received from local officials has helped us successfully launch the eWarrant system in the 40th and 57th judicial circuits," said Attorney General Conway. "eWarrants provides its users with the ability to create complaints, sign complaints into warrants and access those warrants from wherever they are as long as they have an Internet connection."
Service rates for warrants rise from as low as 10% under the old system to roughly 50% immediately after implementation of eWarrants, and as high as 80% in the long-term. There are nearly 380,000 warrants currently in the eWarrants database.
The eWarrant system replaces the manual protocols for processing warrant information with an electronic method for making warrants available via the Law Enforcement Information Network of Kentucky (LINK), the system administered by Kentucky State Police and used by law enforcement to transmit and retrieve information on active warrants.
Kentucky's eWarrant system began as a pilot project in 2005 to address a backlog of nearly 300,000 un-served warrants in the state. A backlog in the service of warrants, or a misplaced or lost warrant, could allow a person charged with a violent crime to evade arrest and continue to victimize Kentucky citizens.
"The backlog in the service of warrants has been a big problem for communities across the Commonwealth," said Wayne County Attorney Tom Simmons. "eWarrants will increase the service rates of warrants immensely and be a great help to the community. I appreciate Attorney General Conway and his staff, as well as the other local officials, judges, clerks and law enforcement who have worked together to successfully launch eWarrants in our area."
The ARRA grant, which provided funding for implementation and training in the 40th and 57th judicial circuits, was awarded from the U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Assistance under the category of Facilitating Rural Justice Information Sharing. Under this category, the Bureau of Justice Assistance makes awards to help law enforcement in rural areas to improve the criminal justice system by aiding communities in combating crime and drugs.
The eWarrant program is being offered to Kentucky's rural counties at no cost to local communities. In addition to modernizing law enforcement infrastructure, the ARRA grant has created 16 jobs for citizens of the Commonwealth. Individuals may obtain more information about eWarrants by filling out the eWarrant contact form on the Attorney's General's website, at http://ag.ky.gov/ewarrants.
*This project was supported by award No. 2009-SD-B9-0067, awarded by the Bureau of Justice Assistance, Office of Justice Programs. The opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Department of Justice.