Brownsville Municipal Court – Brownsville, OR

Oct 26, 2021

A municipal court is a court with small area of authority over criminal offenses and civil disputes inside its geographic area. These courts can be located at the city or county level.

Brownsville Municipal Court INformation

Court: Brownsville Municipal Court
Address: “255 North Main Street, PO Box 188, Brownsville, OR 97327”
Phone: 541-466-5666

City: Brownsville
County: Linn
State: Oregon

What is the role of the Brownsville Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are often called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” This means that they handle minor crimes, civil disputes, and traffic violations. Courthouses like Brownsville Municipal Court are the first level of court for this group of matters.

In other situations, the role of a county court is to deal with a large number of civil disputes within the respective region. Most cases involve family law matters, personal injury, more serious criminal charges, or breaches of contract.

County courthouses have the jurisdiction to deal with misdemeanors and civil actions that can not exceed the amount of $15k, while the circuits courts handle felony cases and larger civil cases.

TYPES OF Matters adjudicated IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Brownsville, Oregon

Municipal courts are the lowest level of courts 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 serve their people or to save money on administrative costs. The cases that could be heard by a municipal court can change based on on the municipality, but typically include traffic tickets, low level crimes and code infractions.

There is no set definition for what establishes 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 managed in the municipal court in Brownsville?

Municipal courts are the lowest level of the court system in the United States. They have jurisdiction over minor crimes, traffic crimes, and other civil matters. Municipal courts are have often been called city courts or town courts. Cases are managed 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 time period.

Magistrates manage hearings to determine:

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

The usual process of a Municipal Court Case

The common process of a municipal court case can be tricky. The following material is an overview of the steps involved in a typical municipal court case.

Step One: An Issuance of Summons

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

Second Step: 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 Brownsville, OR

Penalties change often, which is why it’s good to speak with licensed lawyer near you. The information below represents common penalties, but may not be accurate for the Brownsville Municipal Court. 

A violation is an offense that has a penalty of $500 or less, while a misdemeanor charge can have penalties up to $1,000.00 or one year in 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 courts vary depending on the severity of an crimes. For example, if you are caught with marijuana without having a license for it then you could be fined up to $2,000 or spend up to six months in jail.

Brownsville Municipal Court Records

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

Questions ABOUT the Brownsville Municipal Court

What is municipal court in Brownsville, Oregon?

In Oregon, the municipal court is a lower level with civil and criminal matters within a town or municipality. Municipal courts thus 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 Brownsville, Oregon?

Depending on the scope 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 handled by higher authorities.

How many judges does the Brownsville Municipal Court have?

The count of judges depends on the municipality’s size.

How are cases heard in municipal courts in Oregon?

A municipal courthouse judge may be either elected or appointed to serve for a set duration or until they retire. Judges are commonly elected by the people with each precinct’s results judged according to population. Municipal magistrates are often not lawyers but have some legal training and must complete multiple hours of ongoing material every period to maintain their credentials.