Police Agencies Puzzled Over Court's Ruling on Misdemeanors

LITTLE ROCK, AR - Unless they beat somebody up, threatened to, or failed to show up in court, misdemeanor offenders in many Arkansas cities are probably safe from arrest for a time after an Arkansas Appeals Court ruling last spring.  The court found that criminal procedures call for issuing citations to suspects instead.

Police, prosecutors, and judges across the state are trying to figure out how best to respond to the court ruling in April.  A number of agencies have instructed officers not to make an arrests on misdemeanor warrants unless the suspected crime includes violence, such as terroristic threatening or battery, or is for failure to appear in court.

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