Detroit-area prosecutor: I need help as cases rise

Michigan

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DETROIT (AP) — The chief law enforcer in Michigan’s largest county is pleading with retired assistant prosecutors to join her staff after a wave of departures and a “staggering” number of crimes in the Detroit area.

Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy said she’s losing staff to other jobs and can’t compete with higher starting salaries elsewhere, the Detroit Free Press reported Monday.

Wayne County Circuit Court has more than 3,000 cases awaiting trial, and local courts have more than 10,000 cases pending, Worthy said in an email to retired assistant prosecutors.

“Everyone’s caseload is really inhumane. We have many positions that we cannot fill,” Worthy wrote. “And on top of all of this, crime has spiraled out of control and the numbers are staggering.”

She’s looking for lawyers to work on a temporary basis.

“This is a call to action,” her email said.

In Macomb County, pay for entry-level assistant prosecutors is more than than $60,000, which is higher than Wayne County. Oakland County starts around $65,000.

Prosecutor Peter Lucido said his office also has case backlogs.

“I have a whole unit of domestic violence and we can’t keep up,” Lucido said.

Chief assistant prosecutor David Williams said Oakland County has only a few openings.

“Wayne County has a tougher time because they can’t pay as much,” he said.

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