July 25, 2014

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New policy for Cleveland police has time limit for filing charges

CLEVELAND — Cleveland’s police department has a new policy that starts a clock once an arrest is made.

Officers must bring charges within 36 hours or let the suspect go. The (Cleveland) Plain Dealer reported the directive signed last week by police Chief Michael McGrath follows instances of people being jailed too long without being charged and given a chance to make bail.

A Cleveland municipal court judge this month drew from a U.S. Supreme Court ruling in ordering police to bring suspects before judges no later than 48 hours after arrests.

The judge told The Plain Dealer the new police policy has safeguards so officers can get more time to file charges if needed and don’t have to release suspects who should not be back on the streets.