October 1, 1979
|TO:||Clerks of Court, Magistrates, and Municipal Judges
|FROM:||L. Edmund Atwater, III, Staff Attorney
|RE:||South Carolina Rules of Criminal Procedure Rule 3, Transmittal and Disposition Procedures for Arrest Warrants|
I am enclosing a copy of Rule 3 of the South Carolina Rules of Criminal Procedure (SCRCrimP). This Rule specifies the procedures to be followed in the transmittal of arrest warrants and other documents. Paragraph A provides that municipal judges, magistrates, and other official authorized to issue arrest warrants shall forward such documents and other papers relating to the case to the clerk of court within fifteen (15) days from date of arrest. This procedure is the current procedure in force throughout this State. The transmittal certificates and related procedures will be continued as in the past. This paragraph, again, restates existing procedures.
Paragraph B requires that the clerk of court forward a copy to the solicitor within two (2) business days from date of receipt from the issuing official. The individual clerk has the option as to whether to use a form receipt system or not verify that transmittal was made within the two (2) day period. The paragraph restates the existing procedure with the added feature of setting a deadline for the transmittal.
I wish to call your attention to the fact that nothing in paragraph A or B prohibits the official from acting prior to the deadlines provided in the paragraphs, i.e., a warrant can be transmitted prior to the expiration of the fifteen (15) day period to the clerk of court and the clerk can transmit to the solicitor prior to the expiration of the two (2) day period.
Paragraph C requires dispositive action by the solicitor within ninety (90) days after receipt of the arrest warrant from the clerk of court. Please note that all actions taken must be documented and filed with the clerk of court. Please also note that one of the dispositions is the preparation of an indictment of presentment to the grand jury. The actual presentment of the indictment will be done in the normal course as it is in the current procedure. The indictment will be assigned a case number upon preparation and will be reported under the criminal docket reporting system.
Criminal or Traffic cases in Municipal Courts must be initiated by either a numbered arrest warrant (furnished by SCCA) or a uniform traffic ticket. The clerk of court should return any warrant not on the standard uniform numbered warrant form to the issuing official. If we may provide further information, please contact us at your convenience.