Eastern District Commissioner Ray Weter of Christian County, Arkansas, noting the need for additional courtroom space, has proposed moving the sheriff’s office out of the justice center in Ozark, where the need for more courtroom space is needed, and into an $800,000 two-story modular building which would be built next to the Justice Center. The goal, according to what news-leader.com tells MHProNews, is to keep the prosecutor’s office, the courts and the circuit court clerk’s office in the same building because they interact the most on a daily basis. Western District Commissioner Bill Barnett says adding one courtroom at the justice center will do little to alleviate crowding, but the voters turned down a 1/4 cent tax increase which would have provided for an expansion of the justice center. Because of population growth an additional associate circuit judge may be appointed as early as July of this year, and may have only a temporary courtroom from which to work. Additional courtrooms would also mean inmates would not be held as long without trial.
(Photo credit: Spectrum Building Systems–modular jail)