There are new developments in connection with the computer issues at the Shelby County jail and courthouse. Three weeks ago, a new Odyssey computer system was supposed to go online, to make getting records and information easier. But it’s made everything more complicated. Local I-Team’s Mike Matthews learned this is nothing new with the system, or the computer systems vendor.
It has been quite an odyssey, this Odyssey computer system in the criminal justice center.
By now you’ve probably heard the stories of people being held in the Shelby County jail for no reason, or of how their records and criminal histories were gone, missing.
It’s bad. And it’s getting worse – at least that’s what some judges think.
“I’m not issuing warrants and I don’t think any of the judges are, unless we are dead certain the person had notice of their court date,” said Judge Bill Anderson.
There is a class action lawsuit filed on behalf of inmates. According to our investigation, it’s not the first.
A lawsuit was filed in Indiana, saying the Odyssey system was creating the same kind of problems. And the company that is the vendor for the system, Tyler Technologies, is having troubles not just in Memphis – But in California, Florida, Washington state, and Texas.
There are a few cases where the Odyssey computer system hasn’t worked in months.
“Given the fact they’ve got this problem in other places, I’m, uh, this little bit about oh, we’ll get it resolved one by one, uh uh. I want it resolved now. I want better action then what they’re getting in California,” says Shelby County commissioner Heidi Shafer.
Tyler Technologies has had six people in Memphis working to fix the system. At the end of this week, they are expected to leave, even though the computer is only working at between 85% and 90% levels.
It is resulting in overworked staffers with court clerk Ed Stanton. “We need additional training and technical assistance.”
Shelby County Commissioners are wanting answers on this. They approved the plan, approved spending $10-million of your money on the system. So the discussions won’t be going away anytime soon.