CHATHAM COUNTY, Ga. (WSAV) — Too many cases, not enough manpower. One Chatham County attorney called it a crisis. And, many law officers are asking the county for help. Attorneys, judges, the district attorney all appeared before Chatham County Commissioners Thursday to request additional funding for their departments in the budget for the next fiscal year. District Attorney Meg Heap told them her department handles 21-thousand cases currently. That’s up from 18-thousand cases last year. She’s requesting a new staff attorney. Other departments expressed similar needs.
“Now we have created a new police dept with that I believe is why we’ve seen an increase of 3000 cases and those cases come to my office I have to process them in any way I can,” says District Attorney Meg Heap.
“We have attorneys in my office right now, I checked yesterday, that have 377 cases that’s 227 more than what the bar says we professionally and ethically should have. That keeps me up at night, that number scares me,” says Todd Martin, Chatham County Acting Chief Public Defender.
Chatham County Commissioners will hold another public hearing on June 28th. They will vote on the budget following the hearing.