Local DA’s office suffers severe debt following COVID-19 shutdown

Limestone County District Attorney’s office is $150,000 in debt after shutdown, with hopes of recovering

DA's Office suffers from COVID-19

LIMESTONE COUNTY, Ala. (WAFF) - When COVID-19 first made it’s way into Alabama back in March, Limestone County District Attorney Brian Jones says he had no idea the lasting impacts it would have on his office.

“We ended up in a situation where, statewide, what a lot of people don’t realize is that a lot of District Attorney’s offices were gonna close because they weren’t gonna be able to make payroll," Jones explained.

Jones tells WAFF 48 News, the DA’s office runs mostly from court costs and fees. Without court in-session, they ended up in a $150,000 deficit.

“With the money drying up while we were closed, we had to really get after it as far as cost-cutting. One of the simplest things was West Law. that’s our legal research program we use for any time of brief or pleading we had to file. We canceled it. So from march until the beginning of this month, we’ve had no legal research, we’ve been using Google," Jones said.

Jones says they’ve also had to cut staff in the office.

The DA’s office even asked the Limestone County Commission for money during the annual budget hearings, which Jones says was shut down.

Jones says without that $150,000, it makes it hard to serve the people of Limestone County.

Jury trials and all court proceedings are set to begin again October 19th.

Jones says he hopes things will turn around, however also says he will continue asking the commission to contribute.

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