DETROIT (CBS Detroit) It’s a brand new day for people who face court hearings in Detroit.

Starting today, there’s a new pre-hearing docket at the notoriously slow, overcrowded 36th District Court that the court administrator will keep more cops on the street and speed up the hearing process. Michael Talbot, special judicial administrator, said the new process will have every driver who’s protesting a traffic ticket meet with a representative of the law enforcement agency that issued the ticket.

At the pre-hearing, the driver can meet with a representative of the Detroit Police, Wayne County Sheriff, Michigan State Police –– any law enforcement agency with authority to issue traffic tickets in Detroit. The representative will review the driver’s’ record and determine whether the agency can offer a reduced plea. If the driver accepts the offer, he or she can go straight to the case window and pay the reduced ticket,” Talbot said.

“If the driver does not want to accept and requests a hearing, the court will then schedule the hearing, but no deals will be offered at that hearing,” Talbot added.

Deborah Green, Region I director of the State Court Administrative Office, said one goal of the pre-hearing docket is to reduce the time that drivers will spend in court to resolve a ticket.

Green said the docket will also help keep more patrol officers out on the road, by reducing the number of days they have to be pulled off patrol to attend court hearings.

(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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