Lawyers for a group of people suing DeKalb County over its old court system are seeking class-action status, saying the court could have potentially mishandled thousands of other traffic cases.
The lawsuit, which includes 17 plaintiffs, alleges DeKalb County’s Recorders Court reported mistakes about people’s traffic cases to the state Department of Driver Services. That led, the suit says, to the wrongful suspension of people’s driver’s licenses or the failure to reinstate a license.
"So many people wrongly went to jail. Some of these people had never been arrested before in their life, and they were arrested for driving on a suspended license when in fact their license should have never been suspended,” said Gerry Weber, senior counsel at the Southern Center for Human Rights, one of the attorneys representing the plaintiffs.
He said they’re seeking class-action status on the lawsuit because thousands of other people could potentially be affected and could be wrongfully arrested. He said hundreds of thousands of people went through the Recorders Court each year.
Lawyers for the county couldn’t be reached by deadline, but one lawyer told the Daily Report that less than a percent of cases handled by the court are under scrutiny for errors.
Last year, the state Legislature abolished the court after allegations were raised about mismanagement.