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The San Francisco district attorney’s office has created a new link on its Web site that gives thumbnail descriptions and the status of high-profile cases. Office spokesman Mark McNamara said the feature should help the public and press follow the progress of cases that are in the news. “I think there’s the possibility that people would come to the site and get a sense of what the district attorney’s office is doing,” McNamara said. In its initial mode, the www.ci.sf.ca.us/da/ link “Recent Cases of Public Interest” lists 14 cases that the DA’s office believes the public would be interested in. Among them is the case of Jehad Baqleh, the cab driver accused of rape, robbery and murder in the death of passenger Julie Day. McNamara said although the link was designed to make it easier for reporters to track cases they’re following, it’s also a good way to inform the public on pending matters. “We’re trying to strengthen the dialogue between this office and the public,” he said. “It’s something that could have been done a long time ago. We have the technology.” The link is similar to the one on the Web site of City Attorney Dennis Herrera, www.sfgov.org/cityattorney/cases.htm, which lists “Notable Cases.” McNamara said he intends to update the cases as they proceed through the courts, while also adding new high-profile ones as they enter the criminal justice system. He said the office intends to remake and enlarge the Web site of District Attorney Terence Hallinan, who says he’s running for re-election to a third term in 2003.

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