State Attorney's Office Turns to Electronic Filing System
Every year the State Attorney's Office for the Eighth Judicial Circuit handles tens of thousands of court cases. Each of those files has one thing in common: lots of paper.
Back in 2008, the office began the process of filing all of its new Alachua County case files electronically starting with minor cases. In January, all felonies will be placed in the system as well.
"This is the way all of us are going to be doing business in the future," said state attorney Bill Cervone. "And it was my decision that we were going to start it and start it now."
All necessary information will be available to prosecutors on their laptops. They simply search for the clerk number of defendant's name and the relevant documents will be opened. A number of security safeguards have been built in to prevent hacking. The only problem Cervone anticipates is that a power outage would leave the system inaccessible.
"Everybody we deal with is not necessarily on the same page or as far along as us," said Cervone. "That process is going to take several years as we bring everybody together into doing it."
The State Attorney's Office is also looking into converting cases from the other five counties it serves following the January transition of Alachua County's felony cases.
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