Two deputies walked a man in handcuffs from the courthouse to the jail -- something that has been happening less than it used to.
A new report shows that the jail population dropped 3 percent over the last year, continuing a trend that has seen jail population drop by 26 percent over the last five years.
"So absolutely, I think we're headed in the right direction," said Chief Deputy Felicia McAdoo with Mecklenburg County Sheriff's Office.
McAdoo runs the jail and said that one reason for the drop in numbers is, quite simply, that crime is going down.
From arrest to the entire justice system is taking a smarter approach, "You're looking at the prosecutors getting their jobs done. The courts moving them quicker. More programs in the jail," McAdoo said.
"I'm not surprised. I think there's been a collaboration for a long time," said District Attorney Andrew Murray.
Murray said a big reason for the drop is that they've been focusing on more serious offenders, while moving low-level offenders out of the system.
"What it means is we're saving taxpayers money, we're not building new jails where we have to raise big bond money," Murray said.
Some wonder if saving some dollars is worth the risk.
"Ask a victim if he cares or not whether someone stays in jail a little longer than he should," said Marcus Philemon with Mecklenburg County Courtwatch.
Philemon has been speaking out for victims since he started Courtwatch after his own house was broken into, and he's not convinced that finding ways to keep people out of jail will keep them from committing more crimes.
"You can't change the rules of the game and then say, 'OK, we're making the community safer,'" Philemon said. "Show me. Prove it to me with the numbers."