Brazos County Commissioners approve new technology to catch warrant suspects
Tuesday, Brazos County commissioners approved a request from Brazos County Precinct 1 to use a computer program that will help them find defendants.
"This new program is something where we plug in their social security number. It goes through the Texas Workforce and will tell us if they have an active job or where they may be at," explained Brazos County Precinct 1 Constable Jeff Reeves. He helped make the request.
"This is over a 1,000 or right at a 1,000 warrants that we've already gone through and exhausted all of our means to solve them or find out where the people are and get them served," said Reeves as he showed us folders full of files.
"We have over 5,200 warrants in Precinct 1. Which we probably have more warrants than Bryan or College Station, the cities or the Sheriff's office," he said.
Commissioners approved the request in a 2-1 vote. Precinct 4 Commissioner Irma Cauley voted no. She's worried about people being arrested at work.
"I'm hoping that they will find a better way to utilize the information. I would hate to see someone that's trying to help themselves lose that opportunity that we all know that they need," said Cauley.
"I’m not saying don’t arrest. Bring them to take care of their responsibilities, but let’s find a more humane way to do this," she said.
"We have yet to put handcuffs on anybody at their job because, most of the time when they find out that we know where they work, they go take care of the warrant," said Reeves. He said that Cauley's comments were valid and will be considered as they move forward. Reeves said they only approach people at their work as a last resort after other contact efforts fail.
"These are people who have warrants that are outstanding. They need to be served. There is warrant amnesty that can be used, but you know, this is a balance that we've got to strike," said Brazos County Precinct 1 Commissioner Steve Aldrich.
The program will only be used by Precinct 1 at this time. It will cost them $1,500 per year. The constable's office said they hope to start using the technology this fall.