According to District Attorney Scott Ballard, the exercise, which took place Thursday and Friday, was beneficial to both law enforcement officers and his staff.
“It’s always good any time we can get together with law enforcement and let them know what we need from them and find out what they need from us,” he said. “We’re working on the same cases, but from different perspectives. They’re trying to build probable cause and we’ve got the heavier burden of proving a case beyond a reasonable doubt, so it’s good for us to get together to see how we can succeed.”
Maj. Homer Daniel, of the Griffin Police Department’s Uniform Patrol Division, had nothing but praise for the training his officers received.
“You’re talking about new officers — young people. It was outstanding,” Daniel said. “Any time you can get mock trial training in combination with Georgia law and the Second, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth and Eighth amendments, it does them really well.”
Daniel said attendees learned a great deal from the time spent in the sessions.
“They were taught a lot from how to build a case file to different types of hearings, from the grand jury to preliminary hearings to motion to suppress hearings,” he said. “They got a lot of information on what to expect in all these situations. They got some good information, and I know Chief (Frank) Strickland appreciates the training the District Attorney’s Office gave local officers.”
Ballard also said he received positive information in return from the officers present.
“I think it was really good. I was very pleased by the number of officers who attended. They took time out of incredibly busy schedules to be there,” he said. “The ones I talked to are looking forward to doing this again on topics they suggested, so it was well received from the feedback I got.”
Ballard also said he believes the public-at-large will benefit from the training efforts which were spearheaded by Assistant District Attorney Alaina Sullivan.
“It will help us in our work together and I think it’s always good for the community when we can come together and work cooperatively,” he said.