Only about 1 in 200 criminal cases in Bexar County (0.5%) are resolved by trial. Although it is important that prosecutors possess a high level of skill in trial, the vast majority of cases are being resolved by means other than trial. The goal of the District Attorney should be to resolve these cases in ways that are most likely to increase public safety and improve our community. Prosecutors must be trained to understand the best methods to reach these goals. Currently, prosecutors are not trained to understand the effects of incarceration or rehabilitative programs.
Prosecutors are not trained to understand which punishment option will achieve the best long-term result in a given situation. Prosecutors are not trained to understand the role that implicit and unconscious bias play in creating unequal treatment of victims and defendants based on race and economic status. The goal of the District Attorney’s Office should not be to collect trial victories in a handful of cases or to seek out headlines in the press. The goal of the District Attorney’s office should be to do good for the community and achieve the best long-term results in the greatest number of cases possible. Training must reflect these goals.