New Project to Examine Judicial System in Connecticut

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Connecticut's Division of Criminal Justice has created a new project called Moving Justice Forward.

The project is a collaboration between the Division of Criminal Justice and The Center for Court Innovation. Its goal is to improve fairness and efficiency in Connecticut's criminal justice system.

The project will focus on four of the state's 13 judicial districts. They include Hartford, New Britain, Danbury, and New London.

"Those are four different jurisdictions, obviously, you know, urban and suburban, different cities, different makeups," said Chief State's Attorney Richard Colangelo. But they also represent the different types of jurisdictions or judicial districts we have here in Connecticut -- extra-large, large, medium, and small. So we're going to get a sampling of the way that the court system works here in Connecticut."

Staff from The Center for Court Innovation will interview prosecutors, victims, criminal justice stakeholders, and focus groups. They will also observe court hearings and review data and will look at topics such as case initiation, charging, plea-bargaining, sentencing, bail, and communications with law enforcement.

"We want to make sure everyone's voice is heard," Colangelo said. "You know, we don't want to just focus on one particular group or leave one group out. So with all of that input, you know, it's going to lead to a better product as far as being able to come up with you know, fair and equitable ways to accomplish things important."

The Moving Justice Forward project is being funded through private support from the Herbert & Nell Singer Foundation.

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