Virtual Safe Surrender

Avis E. Buchanan Jul 14, 2021

Press Release Virtual Safe Surrender

The Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia (PDS) announces its efforts to support 
the last weekend of the D.C. Superior Court’s 2021 Virtual Safe Surrender program (Safe 
Surrender). This year’s Safe Surrender allows persons to resolve outstanding “bench warrants” 
in D.C. Superior Court (Court) misdemeanor cases. A bench warrant is a warrant issued by the 
court when someone misses a scheduled court hearing. This is different from an arrest warrant 
for a new crime. Safe Surrender is only for bench warrants and only in misdemeanor cases. 
“What makes this year’s Safe Surrender program such an excellent opportunity is that it is being 
held virtually,” says PDS Trial Chief David Knight. A person who thinks they have a bench 
warrant can register with the Court before the program starts and then appear in court using a 
smartphone or computer. The Court and the prosecutors have promised to give all persons who 
surrender on misdemeanor bench warrants favorable consideration in exchange for their 
surrendering to resolve their warrants.

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