Washington County Sheriff's Office
Hillsboro, OR
Forced Release Report

1. What is a forced release?
2. What is the risk assessment used and how does it work?
3. What release options are available for inmates and jail staff?
4. Why is failure to appear in court significant?

For the week,
09/14/14 to 09/20/14
  Forced Releases
each year through
September 20
  Total forced releases
for the year
Total Bookings:   334 2014 228 2014 (to date) 228
Total Releases:   336 2013 408 2013 670
Total Forced Releases:   0 2012 0 2012 1
    2011 2 2011 2


Forced Releases Last Week

Risk1 Name Release Date City Detail



What is a forced release?

The Washington County Jail has the capacity to house 572 inmates. Typically, about 48 offenders are booked into the jail each day (17,611 in 2012). Occasionally, there are not enough beds to hold all the inmates who require lodging. When jail beds are full and no other release options are available, the jail is forced to release inmates. Jail staff strive to release inmates who have the strongest ties to the community and who pose the lowest risk to public safety compared to the other inmates being held. Jail staff members perform a risk assessment to determine which inmates should be released.


What is the risk assessment used and how does it work?

The risk assessment is an objective scoring system that is used to evaluate an inmate's prior criminal history and to measure their ties to the community (such as employment, family, and place of residence). The risk assessment gives higher scores to inmates with prior criminal convictions for violent or drug-related crimes and to those who are repeat offenders.


What release options are available for inmates and jail staff?

  1. Recognizance Release: First time offenders often qualify for release on their own recognizance. This means they are released based on a legal promise to appear in court, but they are not required to post security.
  2. Posting Security: Some inmates can post security (bail). The court sets the amount of security to be paid for release. The security is only returned to the person if they appear in court.
  3. Forced Releases: as described above.


Why is failure to appear in court significant?

The Washington County Jail attempts to hold all inmates charged with Failure to Appear until the first court appearance. However, due to overcrowding, sometimes they must be released. If the inmates who are released fail to appear in court again, a warrant is issued by the court, and law enforcement must locate, re-arrest, and bring them to jail again. The cycle of arrest, release, and failure to appear, is repeated in many cases and is very costly.

When defendants fail to appear in court as scheduled, they waste not only their time, but the time and resources of the court, district attorney and defense attorneys and that translates to taxpayer expense and a further burden to an already limited law enforcement system.


Note:
The charges that appear on this site are only Washington County arrests. Most of these offenders have numerous arrests in other counties and states. The law prohibits the Sheriff's Office from publishing those arrests.