- Associated Press - Thursday, October 13, 2016

CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) - The state’s second homeless court is being set up in Charleston.

The court, approved Wednesday by order of the state Supreme Court, creates an alternative court dealing with minor crimes such as larceny, loitering, shoplifting so homless defendants don’t have to enter the regular legal system.

The Post and Courier reports (http://bit.ly/2e9Gcag) the court will operate out of a homeless shelter in the city.

The idea is to rehabilitate the homeless, a number of whom are veterans, charged with minor offenses. Instead of going to jail, they would be able to keep jobs and if they stay out of trouble have no warrants or arrest records.

The nation’s first homeless court program started in San Diego in 1989. Columbia started the first in the state last year.

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