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BOLIVIA, NC (WWAY) — The trial for former Northwest police officer Michael Hayes at the Brunswick County Courthouse was pushed back again.

We’re hearing it’s because of a statewide shortage of court reporters.

This morning, Hayes was supposed to go to trial for allegedly being involved with an underage prostitute but his court date was moved to August 18th.

This delayed trial is like many across the state. The state court reporting manager David Jester says it’s due to a five percent salary cut in North Carolina that caused many court reporters to leave the state. “A 5% cut may not sound like much but it makes it so we aren’t competitive anymore,” Jester said. “We’re losing court reporters to other jurisdictions around the country.”

Courthouse officials say the shortage is entirely to blame but Jester says that’s not entirely true.

“We had pulled some strings and arranged to have them another court reporter and they told us … that case was gonna get moved for another reason,” Jester said.

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9 Comments on "Brunswick Co. courthouse affected by statewide shortage"

Melissa Lagies
2015 years 8 months ago

The shortage of court reporters in North Carolina is directly as a result of the legislature cutting the transcript rate paid reporters in half so that now we are the lowest paid in the nation in terms of transcript rate. If the state wants to retain its reporters, the legislature needs to reinstate our transcript rate.

Angela Coker
2015 years 8 months ago

I’ve been threatened with being replaced by something my entire 28 years of reporting. I’d love to see any VR software accurately transcribe an Indian doctor’s testimony! Not to mention the many different accents and dialects we have in the US. Woll VR ask them to slow down or repeat something? No, it won’t. We have an extremely difficult job snd are greatly under appreciated.

K. Wild
2015 years 8 months ago

Lol Do you demand a salary and benefits and pension? You make it sound like a crime for a highly trained and skilled court reporter to make an honest living! No way voice recognition could ever do a better job than a live CR; but then you show your ignorance of the whole process from taking down live testimony through transcript production by your comments. The legal system will regret what they’re doing some day, but court reporter’s skills will be still used in other avenues such as captioning for hearing impaired. Try captioning a fast-paced sporting event voice to text! Lol Siri is an idiot and can’t even answer a simple question correctly!

D. Struss
2015 years 8 months ago

Seems Steve Hubbard must be relying upon that same voice recognition for which he advocates. THIS is the type of record one can expect to see without live court reporters. Perhaps Mr. Hubbard should hire one to proofread.

Aaron Haskell
2015 years 8 months ago

Looks like you wrote that comment using voice recognition.

2015 years 8 months ago

If you want Siri to create the official record for your capital case, be my guest. And of course, there will be no proofreaders who would check against the audio, either. So no time involved there, no salaries, no accountability, no responsibility — for computer hardware/software, booting-up, microphones, escorting the jury into the room, telling all present to “Please rise,” securing and copying the files while assuming it has all been audibly and intelligibly recorded without human interaction, including your privileged sotto voce discussions with your legal counsel — a machine can do all with 100 percent reliability and accuracy!

Good look with your appeal.

2015 years 8 months ago

If your comment was dictated with voice-recognition software, that proves that a human, certified reporter is necessary to produce a transcript.

If your comment was typed, it proves that a certified court reporter who can spell should be transcribing proceedings.

2015 years 8 months ago

Indeed,, all throughout the USA, each and very stare is going to experience a continued diminution in available court reporters and income will have little to do with it. Schools teaching machine shorthand are closing it Semmes one every 3 months. Kids today growing up on Nintendo and XBox and see the impact that Apple’s Siri has on their voice texting, they know all too well that voice recognition will someday be the next court reporter who demands no salary and benefits and future pension.

2015 years 8 months ago

I don’t even bother with the voice recorder on my phone for anything. Those things aren’t very good at southern pronunciations. I can only imagine what it would be like for people who don’t have English as a first language.


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