Three judges have been named by the Mississippi Supreme Court to aid in the backlog of cases in Hinds County.
The positions, funded by state-allocated American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) money, will be held by Senior Status Judges David Anthony Chandler, Isadore Patrick Jr., and Betty W. Sanders.
Each judge has served within the Mississippi court system prior to retiring. Chandler held a position as a Mississippi Supreme Court justice, Patrick served as a judge in Mississippi’s ninth judicial district, and Sanders was elected to be a judge in the fourth judicial district.
In May, Lieutenant Governor Delbert Hosemann addressed the need for more judges in Hinds County, announcing the implementation of three new members of the judiciary and two additional district attorneys through ARPA funding.
Hinds County Attorney General Jody Owens testified to the need for more judges in the county before Hosemann’s announcement, stating that there is a backlog of nearly 3,000 cases due to the pandemic.
“Despite the Hinds County Sheriff’s Office and the Jackson Police Department solving crime and arresting suspects — and above the national rates — our systems aren’t built to handle that volume of violent crime,” Owens said. “The solution: we need more judges, we need more prosecutors, we need more public defenders, and we need to prosecute more cases quickly and timely.”
Once officially appointed, the judges will begin serving on cases assigned by the county’s senior circuit judge through January 31, 2023.