Altamont Municipal Division – Gallatin, MO

by | Oct 26, 2021

A municipal court is a court with limited area of authority over criminal offenses and civil disputes within its location. These courts can be found at the county or city tier.

Altamont Municipal Division INformation

Court: Altamont Municipal Division
Address: “Daviess County Courthouse 102 North Main Street, Suite 6, Gallatin, MO 64640”
Phone: 660-663-2932

City: Gallatin
County: Daviess
State: Missouri

What is the role of the Altamont Municipal Division?

Municipal Courts are routinely called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” Which means that they deal with minor crimes, civil matters, and traffic tickets. Courts like Altamont Municipal Division are the first level of court for these types of cases.

On the other hand, the role of a county court is to deal with a large number of civil disputes within the respective region. Most cases involve family matters, personal injury cases, more serious criminal infractions, or lawsuits.

County courthouses have the jurisdiction to deal with misdemeanors and civil matters that can not exceed the amount of $15,000, while the circuits courts handle felonies and larger civil matters.

TYPES OF Legal Matters seen IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Gallatin, Missouri

Municipal courts are the bottom rung of courthouses in the United States. They are usually found within the jurisdiction where they are located, but some jurisdictions share municipal courts with other municipalities.

This can be done to better help their people or to save money on costs. The cases that will be heard by a municipal court can change based on on the municipality, but typically include traffic matters, criminal misdemeanors and code violations.

You will not see a set definition for what makes a misdemeanor versus a felony crime, but generally speaking felonies would require more time in jail than misdemeanor charges and fines may also be higher for felonies. Traffic violations usually result in points against your driver’s license as well

How are cases handled in the municipal court in Gallatin?

Municipal courts are the first tier of the court system in the United States. They have jurisdiction over minor crimes, traffic violations, and other civil matters. Municipal courts are have often been called city courts or town courts. Cases are handled by a magistrate who is usually an attorney, judge, or retired judge. Magistrates may be appointed by the mayor or city council members to help for a specific duration.

Magistrates administer hearings to determine:

  • Probable cause for an arrest
  • Set bail amounts and the conditions of release
  • Conduct arraignment hearings when charges are filed against suspects by police officers
  • Issue search warrants to law enforcement officers in order to seize evidence from crime scenes
  • start preliminary inquiries to determine if there is enough evidence to charge

The Process of a Municipal Court matter

The process of a municipal courthouse case can be difficult to navigate. The next portion is an overview of the most common steps involved in a typical municipal court case.

First Step: An Issuance of Summons

A summons from the court is issued when a person has been charged with violating a local rule or state law. The person who has received the summons from the court will need to show up at their assigned time and location, which is usually the municipal courtroom, to answer for the charge(s) against them. If they don’t appear, they may be found guilty in absentia and could be fined up to $1,000.00 or given a jail sentence if it’s a serious enough offense.

Step Two: Show Up before Judge or Magistrate

If someone fails to respond after being summoned by the judge, there may be a warrant issued for the individual. 

Municipal Court Penalties in Gallatin, MO

Penalties change often, which is why it’s best to speak with licensed attorney. The information below represents common penalties, but may not be 100% accurate for the Altamont Municipal Division. 

A violation is a crime that has a penalty of $500 or less, while a misdemeanor crime can possess penalties up to $1k or one year in local jail. A person’s driving privileges may be suspended for six months if they receive three speeding tickets within 12 months.

The penalties for different crimes in municipal courthouses vary depending on the severity of an offenses. For example, if you are caught with marijuana without having a medical prescription for it then you could be fined up to $2k or spend up to six months in jail.

Altamont Municipal Division Records

Municipal Court records from a municipal court may be difficult to find because they are not always stored in one location or system. The records that a person might need to depend on the type of matter they have in front of the court, what stage it is at in the process, and what type of information is required by law to be present.

Common Questions ABOUT the Altamont Municipal Division

What is municipal court in Gallatin, Missouri?

In Missouri, the municipal court is a lower court with civil and criminal jurisdiction within a city or municipality. Municipal courts have a small area of influence and have limited authority as well, dealing only with petty crimes and misdemeanors.

What does the municipal court handle in Gallatin, Missouri?

Depending on the size of the municipality, a municipal court can handle a civil division (cases with less than  $15,000 at issue), a traffic/criminal division, or a housing and environmental division. Serious cases/crimes are deal with by higher authorities.

How many judges does the Altamont Municipal Division have?

The number of judges depends on the municipality’s population.

How are cases heard in municipal courts in Missouri?

A municipal court judge may be either elected or appointed to serve for a set term of years or until they retire. Judges are sometimes chosen by precincts with each precinct’s results evaluated based on the number of people. Municipal magistrates are generally not lawyers but have some legal education and must complete many hours of continuing education every period to maintain their licenses.