Menu

Paperless File Management: How We Do It

 UPDATED: March 21, 2011

banr-Paperless1

nopaper-25

calendar5

map

smiley2

exclamationpoint

question

Why We Did It Transitioning to Paperless How We Do It (with videos) Benefits of P.F.M. Tips / Suggestions FAQs

 

 



map

HOW WE DO IT
(In Words & Videos)

 

Document In-take

We receive mostly electronic documents from police, courts, attorneys, the public, etc., but also some paper filings. Electronic documents (usually in PDF format) are emailed to our main e-dress (prosecutingattorney@eatoncounty.org). We also have some direct access to Eaton County Sheriff's Department records. New case warrant requests are entered into ACTS/JCTS to assign the Case Key number (a "unique identifier" between our Database and the Imaging program for that specific defendant's case). We must have that identifying number in both applications for our keystroke link to work. Once documents are entered and given the Case Key Number, we can create our folders in the imaging program by either importing electronic documents, or scanning the paper documents into the folder.

 

Scanning & Creating a Laserfiche File

Paper documents are scanned through a high-speed scanner that quickly makes an image of both sides of every page.

VIDEO: Watch our video showing how paper documents are scanned and entered into our paperless file management system. Documents are filtered through OCR (optical character recognition), which indexes printed words so we can search for words throughout any file, case, or the entire database. Video is 14.3 mb (runs 2:46).

 

Handling Files Received By E-mail

Electronic documents (e.g., PDFs) are printed directly to our imaging program by using a virtual "Snapshot" printer feature. We can print PDFs, MS-Word documents, MS-Excel documents, e-mail, etc. directly to Laserfiche, and totally eliminate paper. We can also import audio files, videos, MS-Powerpoint presentations, etc. and drag and drop .jpg photographs right into file.

VIDEO: Watch our video on how police reports are received electronically and entered into our paperless file management system. Prosecutors receive an e-mail with the ACTS/JCTS number to make a charging decision ("screening"). Documents are filtered through OCR (optical character recognition), which indexes printed words so we can search for words throughout any file, case, or the entire database. Video is 20.6 mb (runs 4:14).

How an APA 'Screens' an Electronic File

Without paper files, how do we charge cases?

APAs are notified by e-mail that they have been assigned to "screen" a case (ACTS/JCTS key number). The APA reviews the basic information in ACTS/JCTS and the documents in Laserfiche (warrant request, police report, criminal history, photos, 911 call recordings, etc.). Electronic "sticky notes" can be added to any file with information, notes, etc. Many audio and video recordings (interviews, police dash-cam videos, policy body-cam videos, store security videos) are stored on DVDs and viewed through a DVD drive.

Statutes are listed in PAAM's Electronic Warrant Manual program. Charging codes and other information are entered into ACTS/JCTS. Charging documents are printed, reviewed and electronically signed by an APA, and printed into the case file in Laserfiche.

Electronic "Discovery"

As soon as we receive notice from the court of a newly appointed attorney, or receive an attorney's appearance document through e-mail or postal mail, we e-mail our discovery documents to them directly from our imaging program (charging documents, police reports, photos, etc.). Often the attorney gets their discovery before they ever find out they've been appointed to the case. This process is much faster than the old way of looking for the file, pulling the file, copying the documents, typing out the envelope and putting reports in the mail, and re-filing the file. Now, we highlight, click on "Create e-mail" and send, all without ever leaving our desk.

VIDEO: Watch our video on how we send discovery materials to defense attorneys via e-mail (police reports, charging documents, etc.). Prosecutors receive an e-mail with the ACTS/JCTS number to make a charging decision ("screening"). Documents are filtered through OCR (optical character recognition), which indexes printed words so we can search for words throughout any file, case, or the entire database. Video is 22 mb (runs 2:06).

 

How an APA Uses an Electronic File in Court

Our attorneys appear in court with tablets or laptop computers. A wireless network connects them to case management software, which is also linked to imaging software that stores all case documents and evidence (photographs, video and digital recordings). The attorneys access a particular case's documents from the case management program through a keyboard shortcut, which takes them to the electronic file folder and the documents for that particular case.

Because of the power of optical character recognition (OCR), our attorneys have a new, more powerful way to review case documents to prepare for trial. Laserfiche indexes the text in scanned documents. Our computers can now search all scanned documents (with the exception of handwritten statements). The computer quickly search for key words or phrases in reports or transcripts in the file, or throughout all of our cases. (In one murder case, the defendant gave over five hours of taped statements, which were transcribed. Our attorneys, preparing for cross-examination, searched for key phrases, and the computer quickly produced a summary "hit list" of each location in the transcripts where the defendant had made such a reference. A manual search would have taken hours or days!)

VIDEO: Watch our video on how "911 calls" can be played through Laserfiche. Video is 7.5 mb (runs 1:31).

VIDEO: Watch our video on how trial preparation is made easier with Laserfiche. Video is 6.2 mb (runs 1:11).


 

nopaper-25

calendar5

map

smiley2

exclamationpoint

question

Why We Did It Transitioning to Paperless How We Do It (with videos) Benefits of P.F.M. Tips / Suggestions FAQs

 



| Eaton County Home | Prosecuting Attorney Home | Office Info | Paperless Files | Press Releases | Site Map |
| Victims | Domestic Violence | PPOs | Witnesses | Appeals | Economic Crimes | Family Support |
| Criminal Case Process | Downloads | FAQs | Legal Glossary | Gov't & Search Links | Prosecutor Web Site Index |
 

© 1997-2016 Office of the Eaton County Prosecuting Attorney | Disclaimers | Thanks
© 1997-2016 Eaton County Information Systems
Site developed and maintained by Neil F. O'Brien

Go to top