Carterville Municipal Court – Carterville, MO

by | Oct 26, 2021

A municipal court is a court with restrictive jurisdiction over criminal offenses and civil matters within its geographic area. These courts can be found at the county or city tier.

Carterville Municipal Court INformation

Court: Carterville Municipal Court
Address: “1200 East 1st Street, Carterville, MO 64835”
Phone: 417-673-1341

City: Carterville
County: Jasper
State: Missouri

What is the purpose of the Carterville Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are routinely called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” This means that they work with minor criminal charges, civil disputes, and traffic violations. Courthouses like Carterville 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, accident cases, more serious criminal infractions, or breaches of contract.

County courthouses have the jurisdiction to deal with misdemeanors and civil actions that won’t exceed the amount of $15,000.00, while the circuits courts handle felony cases and more expansive civil matters.

TYPES OF Matters seen IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Carterville, Missouri

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

This can be done to better service their citizens or to save money on costs. The matters that could be heard by a municipal court can change based on on the municipality, but typically include traffic matters, criminal misdemeanors and code infractions.

There is no set definition for what constitutes a misdemeanor charge versus a felony, 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 Carterville?

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 often known as 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 board to help for a specific time period.

Judges administer hearings to determine:

  • Probable cause for arrest
  • Set bail amounts and conditions of release
  • Conduct arraignment hearings when charges are filed against individuals by police officers
  • Distribute search warrants to law enforcement officers in order to seize evidence from crime locations
  • Conduct preliminary examinations to learn if there is enough evidence to mount a charge

The typical process of a Municipal Court matter

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

Step One: An Issuance of Summons

A summons from the court is given when someone has been charged with violating a city ordinance or state law. The citizen who has received the summons from the court will need to be present at their assigned time and place, which is usually the municipal courtroom, to answer for the charge(s) against them. If they don’t come, they may be found guilty in absentia and could be fined up to $1,000.00 or given a jail term 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 Carterville, MO

Penalties change often, which is why it’s good to speak with licensed lawyer. The material below represents common penalties, but may not be 100% accurate for the Carterville Municipal Court. 

A violation is an offense that carries a penalty of $500 or below, while a misdemeanor charge can carry penalties up to $1k 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 offenses 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 $2k or spend up to six months in jail.

Carterville Municipal Court 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 an individual might need to depend on the matter they have in front of the court, where it’s at in the process, and what kind of of information is required by law to be present.

Common Questions ABOUT the Carterville Municipal Court

What is municipal court in Carterville, Missouri?

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

What does the municipal court handle in Carterville, 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 handled by higher authorities.

How many judges does the Carterville Municipal Court 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 duration or until retirement. Judges are sometimes elected by the people with each precinct’s results weighted based on population. Municipal judges are generally not lawyers but have some legal training and must complete several hours of ongoing material every year to maintain their credentials.