Boulder County legal community to host ‘Fresh Start‘ for people with warrants

Having an outstanding warrant can make life even more difficult, so the Boulder County legal community wants to give people a “fresh start,” so to speak.

“We recognize that when you have an active warrant, it impacts your ability to get jobs, to get housing, to secure programs for your kids and function in daily society,” Boulder County District Attorney‘s Chief Trial Deputy Adrian Van Nice said.

“If we can take away that burden, and make sure we are effectively and appropriately resolving these cases, it‘s a win-win for everyone.”

The “Fresh Start,” a cooperative effort between the DA‘s office, the defense bar, the Boulder County Sheriff‘s Office and local judges, will happen from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. April 13 at the Boulder County Justice Center.

Boulder County District Attorney‘s Chief Trial Deputy Adrian Van Nice said the April 13 Fresh Start initiative is a “win-win for everyone.” ()

Van Nice said the DA‘s Office will send out letters to qualifying people with failure to appear warrants for low level, non-violent crimes. Anyone who doesn‘t receive a letter but thinks they qualify may show up at the event without fear of arrest.

There will be at least one functioning courtroom in the hope that some of the cases can be resolved with a plea and sentence.

A news release from the DA‘s office states that regardless of how a person‘s case pans out at the event, their warrant will be vacated. Volunteers from the Boulder County Criminal Defense Bar will be on hand to answer questions.

Boulder defense attorney Josh Maximon said that one interaction with police can turn into several interactions.

“This is an opportunity for people to clear that up and not have any further interactions with the legal system,” he said. “(They can) clear that up and move on with their lives and do a good job at work and have families and have success in life.”

Boulder County District Attorney Michael Dougherty said that generally speaking, people will warrants are struggling, so he sees the fresh start as a way to help them clear up one problem so they can be productive and not commit new offenses.

Dougherty said that people who show up don‘t have to worry about being rearrested, but he warned that that only applies for April 13, and if people show up on different days, their warrants will be handled the traditional way.

He added his office will bring all forces to bear on more serious crime in the interest of justice being served.

“We prioritize those,” he said. “But on low level non violent cases, we want to be innovative on how we approach traditional criminal justice problems.”





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