Alameda Co. Officials Work To Solve ‘Life Altering’ Court Computer Problems

OAKLAND, Calif. (KGO) – Alameda County public advocates say many of their clients are suffering because of problems with a new forensic computer system.

RELATED: Alameda County Court Computer System Creates Big Problems

Some people are charged with the wrong type of crime or even serve longer than necessary.

The public defender’s office knows at least 50 people whose lives have been affected by errors with a new case management system, but says hundreds more have likely been affected without them knowing yet.

“There have been people who have been wrongly arrested, there have been people detained longer than they should have been,” said Alameda County Public Defender Brendon Woods. “There was a conversion problem where people who were supposed to register as drug-related offenders, the system showed them to register as sex offenders.”

Misdemeanors even appear in the system as crimes.

“Can you imagine that you are a person who has just been arrested for unlicensed driving and you have pleaded guilty, and now you have a felony on your record?” Davis asked.

“The prosecutor’s office, like the public defender’s office, absolutely does not want to see this kind of miscarriage of justice,” Alameda County District Attorney Teresa Drenick said.

That’s why both sides argued Tuesday in favor of a motion asking a judge to closely examine more than 2,000 cases to ensure such errors do not continue.

The district attorney’s office says it works with each courtroom, local police departments and its own administrative staff to verify warrants and cross-check files.

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