“Warrant Relief Days” end at DeKalb Sheriff’s Office

Melody Maddox 33

DECATUR – The opportunity to turn yourself in on a misdemeanor charge in DeKalb County and get an immediate bond has ended. The DeKalb County Jail’s “Warrant Relief” program began earlier this month and was extended until Thursday (May 27) to accommodate increasing interest by the public.

The warrant relief program allowed individuals who have outstanding arrest warrants for certain misdemeanor offenses a chance to surrender but avoid being jailed. When misdemeanor suspects turned themselves in voluntarily, they received an unsecured judicial release – a free bond – if charges met the criteria.

Warrant service for some offenses has been delayed due to the closing of courtrooms during the pandemic. When DeKalb County courts are fully re-opened, individuals wanted on misdemeanor warrant charges, including those out on bond, will be expected to answer to the charges in court.

On the last day of the Warrant Relief event, some 283 email inquiries requesting information on eligibility had been received. About 10 percent of the inquiries resulted in individuals voluntarily surrendering to the sheriff’s office, although not all met the guidelines for the unsecured judicial release. Those who could not take advantage of the program were ineligible because they were wanted on felony warrants or had outstanding warrants for other offenses. Those cases required hearings to determine bond amounts or special conditions for bonding.

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