A first-of-its-kind caseload conference will take place this week in Miller County. Public Defender Justin Carver says his office has lost five attorneys over the last year, with two others either going out on leave or serving in the military. The result, he says, is an overburdened office that is not adequately representing his clients. On Friday, he’ll be asking for help from the courts in a process that’s never taken place before in the state.
Some of those options include postponing cases and releasing suspects from jail until their cases are ready to move forward. Miller County Prosecutor Ben Winfrey says he’s hopeful that the conference will have a positive impact, but it’s unchartered territory and he doesn’t know what to expect.
The caseload conference is scheduled for this Friday.