In 2006, it became apparent that in the post-Katrina world the New Orleans District Attorneys office, under the direction of Eddie Jordan, was falling off the tracks. One of the ongoing problems was the so-called 701 releases in which jailed suspects were released from incarceration because the DA hadnt formerly accepted charges within 60 days of a suspects arrest. Even if later on the DAs office screened a particular case and accepted charges, police would still have to locate the accused person and re-arrest them.
Although Dalton Savwoir, a spokesman for the DAs office says that 701 release records werent kept for 2006, several news agencies local, national and international reported that there were as many as 3,000 such releases in 2006. Savwoir says his office diligently cooperated with the NOPD to curtail the 701s in 2007, but this past year began with 580 releases in January 07.
Richard Jackson was given a 701 release for an assault arrest in September of this year. As reported in the Gambit Weekly article, Traffic Fatality, Jackson was accused of fatally beating Oscar Fuselier in an Orleans Parish Prison holding cell.
Find out more about the status of the Oscar Fuselier case and what the most recent numbers are for 701 releases in Orleans Parish in the upcoming Gambit Weekly article, Justice for Oscar Fuselier?