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The Courts Branch is made of Uniform and Civilian Personnel who work in conjunction to ensure that the safety and the security of the Court House is maintained, as well as preparing all the requisite paperwork relative to the investigations that are conducted by the Greater Sudbury Police Service. They must also make sure it is prepared in a complete and professional manner so that it can be presented to the Court.
The Courts Branch is made up of three sub-branches; they are, Court Clerks, Court Coordinators, and Court Security.
In total the Courts Branch consists of one Staff Sergeant, one Sergeant, 3 police Constables officers, 11 full time Special Constables, 7 part time Special Constables, 4 Court Clerks, and 7 Court Coordinators.
Members who are responsible for Courts Security monitor the activities at the two local Court Houses. The main court house is situated at 155 Elm Street, and holds 10 Court Rooms; while the second location is at 159 Cedar Street and houses 4 Court Rooms.
Special Constables assigned to Court Security perform numerous tasks during the course of their day. These duties include, but are not limited to, the fingerprinting and photographing of accused persons under the Identification of Criminals Act. The collection of DNA samples from convicted persons also falls under the Special Constables purview. They are also responsible for providing security for the Court House, which includes ensuring that all stakeholders, general public, persons in custody, are within a secure environment.
Offender management is a huge component of the daily activities of the Courts Branch Special Constables. This includes transport of prisoners from local detention facilities to the court house, and the movement of prisoners throughout the Court House. Officers will also attend anywhere in the nation to return accused person's back to the jurisdiction of Sudbury to face their outstanding charges.
Our court coordinators are responsible for the filing of Crown Briefs, entry of dispositions onto NICHE (the Greater Sudbury Police Records Management System), answering queries from the RCMP, CPIC and other agencies regarding court dispositions and outstanding court matters. This is in addition to the duties required to prepare the files for court and the "in court" duties that the coordinators had always performed such as the scheduling of Officers and other witnesses for Court. Courts Branch Coordinators are an important liaison with the Crown Attorney, particularly during the trial process.
The Court Clerks process all the charges laid by the Greater Sudbury Police Service. When a clerk is tasked with preparing a Crown Brief they must ensure that it contains the arrest report, witness statements, and all other supporting documentation to support the charge. The Clerks will make copies of the Crown Brief for the Crown Attorney (or Federal Crown Attorney) and the Defence. They also prepare the Information (Charging Document), Warrant for Arrest, or summons and provide them to Courts Branch Police Officers, who then attend before a Justice of the Peace and swear to the document. Most importantly the Court Clerk is a liaison between the Crown Attorney's office and the investigating officer ensuring that all follow-up action required for a case is completed in a timely fashion.
The Courts Branch also has an Audio Visual Technician who is responsible for disclosing various forms of media as evidence for the Courts.
The Courts Branch is responsible for providing service in relation to prisoner escorts, court security, service of court related documents, court appearances, bail hearings, trials, transfer of charges as well as maintaining accurate and timely records. Members of the Courts Branch are in frequent contact with a host of other police services and agencies such as the Judiciary, Crown Attorney Defense Counsel, Court Administrative Staff, public and private agencies regarding victims and offenders, as well as the general public and other members of our Service. In 2001, 2 Special Constables were assigned to 159 Cedar St. on a full time basis. This courthouse is located in the Ministry of Northern Development and Mines Building. It consists of 4 courtrooms and deals mostly with family, youth and child protection matters. On occasion these Courts will entertain criminal cases. There are 3 holding cells, and one interview room consisting of two booths at this Court facility.
In 2009 extensive renovations at the courthouse were made, to dramatically increase the holding cell capacity for in custody individuals who are awaiting appearances in court. This was accomplished by the putting together three prefabricated trailers at the rear of the Court house. By virtue of this construction it increased the inmate holding capacity for the Service by adding 8 more cells. There are also a second control room, a supervisor's office, a decontamination shower, and a large secure fenced sally port as part of this new construction.