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04/03/2012 07 Effect of Additional Police Officers on the Prosecution Division Workload - Report r BUSINESS OF THE CITY COUNCIL YAKIMA, WASHINGTON AGENDA STATEMENT Item No. 7 For Meeting of: April 3, 2012 ITEM TITLE: Report regarding the effect of additional police officers on the Prosecution Division workload. SUBMITTED BY: Cynthia Martinez, City Prosecutor CONTACT ' Cynthia Martinez, City Prosecutor, 575 -6030 PERSON/TELE :PHONE: SUMMARY EXPLANATION: See attached; Resolution Ordinance Other (specify) Contract: Mail to: Contract Term: Amount: Expiration Date: Insurance Required? No Funding Source: Phone: APPROVEDFOR SUBMITTAL: City Manager STAFF RECOMMENDATION: BOARD /COMMISSION RECOMMENDATION: ATTACHMENTS: Click to download ❑ Memo re prosecution division CITY OF YAKIMA LEGAL DEPARTMENT 200 South Third Street, Yakima, WA 98901 -2830 (Phone) 509- 575 -6033 (Fax) 509- 575 -6160 MEMORANDUM TO Jeff Cutter, City Attorney FROM Cynthia Martinez SUBJECT Effect of Additional Officers on the Prosecution Division Workload I have been asked to address how the addition of 12 Yakima Police Department (YPD) officers will affect the Prosecution Division workload Of course, one can't predict the future, but a look at past trends may provide some guidance In 2005, six (6) YPD officer positions were added as a result of the 03% Initiative approval by the voters YPD began recruiting to fill those positions immediately and I believe by the end of 2006, most, if not all of those officers were working By the end of 2006, the Prosecution Division caseload had jumped from 5,933 cases a year to 7,049, an increase of 1,116 cases Fortunately, as a result of the 03% Initiative we were able to add a prosecutor and a legal assistant position to meet the demands of the additional caseload The reduction in YPD officers over the last two years does correlate with a reduction in the Prosecution caseload See below PROSECUTORS TOTAL WORKING THE YEAR DWI OTHER TRAFFIC OTHER MISDEMEANOR CASELOAD CASELOAD 2007 436 2526 2867 5829 4 2008 517 2488 3027 6032 4 2009 694 2566 2857 6117 4 2010 520 2175 2694 5389 3 2011 469 2122 2551 5142 3 This reduction in caseload, along with some other Council approved measures, has allowed the Prosecution Division to continue to prosecute all crimes, even after losing a prosecutor position at the end of 2009 Memo to Jeff Cutter March 22, 2012 Page - 2 If the increase in caseload is consistent with the increase experienced as a result of the .03% Initiative passage; when the new officers begin working, I anticipate an increase in the Prosecution caseload. Using past figures, this increase could be as high as 2,000 cases per year when all 12 YPD officers are working. This would increase prosecutor caseload numbers from 1,700 per prosecutor to 2,380 per prosecutor. The legal assistants would also experience a corresponding increase in workload. To put these numbers into context, the American Prosecutors Research Institute and Office of Justice Programs recommend that a prosecutor handle a caseload of 400 -590 misdemeanor cases a year. Last time the Prosecution Division conducted a poll, the county and city prosecution caseloads across the State were from 800 to 1,200 cases per prosecutor. This change also comes at a time when the Washington Supreme Court is considering a rule that would limit public defender caseload numbers to no more than 300 cases per year. If an increase of 2,000 cases is realized, the City could face the prospect of hiring an additional 6 -7 defense attorneys just to handle this increased caseload. Numbers are on a per year basis. ' How Many Cases Should a Prosecutor Handle? Results of the National Workload Assessment Project, Chapter 5, American Prosecutors Research Institute,. 2002.