CONWAY, SC (WMBF) – The 15th Circuit Solicitor’s Office recently started handling transfer court cases differently than they used to.
Solicitor Jimmy Richardson said all transfer court cases are now handled by one judge in one courtroom rather than having them separately throughout the day.
“It would’ve taken about three-and-a-half, four hours to do 25 pleas,” Richardson said. “It’s taken us about 30 minutes to do a little bit less than that. I think we could easily do 75 to 100 of these pleas in an hour.”
Richardson said transfer court is usually for smaller crimes, and more often than not, they’re hearings for time already served.
According to Richardson, the solicitor’s office got inspiration for this new method after observing courtrooms in the Midlands.
“We really modeled it after a transfer court in Richland County and out of Lexington County,” he said. “They do a really good job with it. We went up and watched how they did it.”
Transfer court cases used to be handled by circuit court judges. Richardson said they’re now handled by magistrate court judges, which means the circuit court judges have more time to focus on bigger cases.
“Instead of grouping them in and taking away from the plea time for armed robberies and trafficking cocaine and trial time, it’s going back to magistrate’s court,” Richardson said.
Copyright 2018 WMBF News. All rights reserved.