CUYAHOGA COUNTY, OH (WOIO) - The Judges of the Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court voted Wednesday to end their relationship with the Justice System Reform (JSR) group.
The judges also resigned from the JSR Governing Board.
In a letter delivered to County Executive Armond Budish, who is the chairman of the JSR, the judges wrote that they believe some JSR members are pushing for their own reform agenda without input from the bench or other justice system stakeholders.
Despite removing itself from the JSR, the Court remains open to discussing potential changes in the criminal justice system.
If there is a project that our partners in the justice system mutually agree would be beneficial to efficient operations, the Court will be open to reviewing it.
Budish released a statement in response to the judges' move:
"Our criminal justice system is not working to fully protect the rights of all citizens. Through countless discussions with partners in the criminal justice system including the courts, we have developed three proposals to address crucially needed reforms: fairness in charging protocols, equity in bail setting and early appointment of counsel. Whatever the forum, we expect these critical conversations to continue, not forgetting that the core issue is fairness and equity. The citizens of this county are depending on us, particularly the hundreds of people waiting in jail for unnecessarily long periods prior to having their opportunity to be heard in court."
Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Tim McGinty also released a statement: