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Criminal Suspects Freed From Jail Due To Computer Glitch

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(credit: KTVT/KTXA) Bud Gillett
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DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) - Twenty five criminal suspects were mistakenly freed from jail due to a computer glitch, according to Dallas Police.

The problem comes as DPD is breaking in a new record management system that replaces the system that had been in place for the past 30 years.

According to authorities, the suspects were released because paperwork supporting their arrests didn’t make it to prosecutors in time.

“Because of that backlog, some of those cases did not reach Dallas county within the required 72 hours,” said DPD Deputy Chief Christina Smith.  “We are working with the District Attorney’s office to get those cases refiled.”

Deputy Chief Smith explained some of the input mistakes may have occurred because of inexperience with the new system.

“Basically it’s just a familiarity with how the new system works, what to put in certain boxes in the data input, and sometimes certain boxes weren’t completed, and so things are going back for correction.”

Smith says most of the released suspects were arrested for property crimes and very few were violent offenders.  None were homicide suspects, one had been arrested for robbery.  A few had been accused of family violence, which could cause additional problems for their alleged victims.

“I think it would be a frightening thing to think they were arrested and kept overnight or a few nights in jail, and then to have them to possibly show back up,” said Paige Flink, CEO of The Family Place.  “If you’re a victim of family violence often you think no one is going to take you seriously.”

CBS 11 has learned that at least one suspect is back in custody. Police are working with the Dallas County Sheriff’s Department to try to locate the rest.

(©2014 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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