Brown County Judge Responds to County Program Controversy

BROWNWOOD, Texas (KTAB) - Brown County Judge and Commissioner Chair Ray West commented on the Pretrial Diversion Program being considered "unlawful" by the Attorney General.

The Pre-Trial Diversion Program allows people with misdemeanor crimes and without a criminal record, to pay the county in exchange for dropping charges.

The Brown County Auditor, Jennifer Robinson, publicly expressed that the money would have to be re-paid and she believes it could be up to $700, 000. Robinson is in the process of figuring out who owes and how to get it back.

West stated that that was not the way it would be handled and that it's too pre-mature to tell.

He also added that whether the money has to be paid back or not is solely up to the Commissioner's Court and would be put on the agenda to be voted on. If approved, then the process of figuring out how much money and to whom it would be paid back to, if at all.

"At this point in time, to assume that we are responsible to pay money, now that may be a reasonable assumption at this time, we don't know the extent to which that money will be paid back, we don't know the effect that will have on a given case," said West. 

West also stated that he doesn't think it's appropriate for the court to start making decisions about how the money is to be paid back and that it's not on the upcoming agenda to do so.

He says those decisions would need to be made by the Commissioners Court. 


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