New program offers amnesty to people with misdemeanor warrants - WNEM TV 5

New program offers amnesty to people with misdemeanor warrants

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FLINT, MI (WNEM) -

Monday was a busy day for local police working to clear up a lengthy back log of outstanding warrants and they're doing it by cutting people a little slack.

A new program is offering amnesty to people with misdemeanor warrants, hoping to give them a fresh start.

"You ain't got to worry about going to jail, none of that. It's a safe thing. They ain't going to take you," Calvin Munerlyn said.

Munerlyn came in for a fresh start Monday. Flint police along with other law enforcement and community groups sponsored the new program in the area. There are two goals, give people with misdemeanor warrants the chance to clear their record, without running the risk of going to jail, and for police to clear non-felony warrants off the books.

"What we're looking at in my mind, about 8,000 warrants active from the 2000s to present. Some people maybe had some civil infractions driving that they haven't answered the ticket summons. Some ordinance violations, disorderly conduct things of that nature, where they haven't also answered the citation," Flint Police Chief James Tolbert said.

The chief said the program is not only designed to help them rid the books of some of the thousands and thousands of warrants they have, but it's also designed to give people another chance.

"Because they have these warrants maybe they can't be employed. Maybe they can't drive legally. So now we give them a chance where they can get a job clearance so they can have and go to an employer and say look I don't have any warrants. Or they go to an employer. Now they can drive back and forth to work and not look over their shoulder," Tolbert said.

The program focused on people in two Flint zip codes with plans to include others in the future.

Munerlyn said when they offer the program again people need to listen up.

"A lot more people need to come down and check into it and come down," he said.

Monday was the first of what Tolbert hopes to be a series of these fresh start events.

Copyright 2014 WNEM (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

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