This section presents data on all cases prosecuted by the District Attorney's (DA) Office that have reached a final resolution (a case disposition). Cases can be resolved in a variety of ways, including by dismissal, diversion, deferred judgment, guilty plea, or by acquittal or guilty verdict at trial.
Why is this important? It is important to review how cases are resolved to ensure we are addressing serious crime effectively while minimizing unnecessary punitiveness.
Below are a set of indicators that provide additional context about case resolutions. These indicators help the DA's Office ensure they are achieving outcomes efficiently, effectively, and fairly.
As stated in our discussion of the "Case Filing Differenced by Defendant Race/Ethnicity" indicator, it has been a challenge to collect accurate race and ethnicity information about our Hispanic citizens. Until we develop a more accurate way of collecting this data, it should be viewed with caution.
The purpose is not to achieve perfect parity, but to make sure that there are not large disparities between Hispanic and White individuals over time. Differences of 3% or less suggests no evidence of disparity.
Our aim is to achieve racial/ethnic equity in plea outcomes to ensure that the vast majority of cases receive fair treatment. This is a high priority and important indicator for our office to monitor and take future action.
It is not possible to examine plea differences for Black individuals and individuals of Another Race due to the low number of cases. Click Here for more information about race and ethnicity data collection and limitations.
The time it takes to resolve a felony case is influenced by factors both in the control and out of the control of prosecutors, including the complexity of the case, whether further investigation is necessary, the filing and litigation of pretrial motions, and the number of continuances requested. Our office is committed to using this indicator to create measurable benchmarks to reduce the time it takes to resolve felony cases to more acceptable levels.
Case dismissals are based on a variety of factors including the strength of the case, whether further investigation is required and the results of that investigation, new evidence coming to light after the case is filed, the success or failure of pretrial motions, the goals and priorities of crime victims, and the cooperation of witnesses.
Attorneys should be able to quickly identify the strengths and weaknesses of a case to make timely dismissal decisions. Our office is committed to using this indicator to create a measurable benchmark to reduce the time it takes to make these types of decisions to more acceptable levels.
- Each case is reflected by its top disposition. For example, if a charge on a case is dismissed as a part of plea negotiations and another charge on the case is plead guilty, the case will be reflected here as a “plead guilty.”
- The charge level represents the most serious charge filed in a case.
- Warrants are excluded (for all cases identified as a warrant).
- Cases disposed with a disposition reason “deceased defendant” are excluded from case resolution related charts.