Oxford Police Department view Warrant Amnesty Week a “success”

Published 12:26 pm Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Last week the Oxford Police Department held its Warrant Amnesty Week. It was the first time in several years the department had done so. Despite a low turnout they viewed it as a “success.”

The event, which ran from Sept. 16-20, was for anyone who may have missed their court date and had a bench warrant out for their arrest could come in and schedule a new date. They would be allowed to do so without serving jail time. It was for only those with misdemeanor, municipal, offenses. Felony offenses were not eligible.

Officer Kevin Houston was in charge of the event, and said two people with actual warrants came by the station. Around 20 people either called or came by the station to check on their status.

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Leading up to last week and following the announcement, Oxford residents were skeptical and felt it was a trick by the police station to lure in those with warrants and arrest them with ease. Some even took to social media, tagging the OPD social media accounts with their concerns.

Despite interim police chief Jeff McCutchen and Officer Houston’s rebuttals of the event not being a scam, the low participation number may have been a cause of that concern.

“I would say it was successful,” Houston said. “As the word gets out that it isn’t a trick, I think more people will take advantage of this.”

Houston stated the department is planning to hold the event again sometime in the future, but did not say if it would become an annual occurrence.