Jamestown Municipal Court – Jamestown, TN

by | Oct 27, 2021

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

Jamestown Municipal Court INformation

Court: Jamestown Municipal Court
Address: “City Hall 314 East Central Avenue, Jamestown, TN 38556”
Phone: 931-879-8815 ext. 202

City: Jamestown
County: Fentress
State: Tennessee

What is the purpose of the Jamestown Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are commonly called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” This means that they work with minor crimes, civil cases, and traffic tickets. Courthouses like Jamestown Municipal Court are the first level of court for these types of cases.

On the other hand, the purpose of a county court is to deal with a large number of civil disputes within the respective region. Most cases involve divorce or other family matters, accident cases, more serious criminal charges, or contract disputes.

County courthouses have the jurisdiction to deal with misdemeanors and civil matters that can’t exceed the amount of $15,000, while the circuits courts handle felony matters and bigger civil cases.

TYPES OF Matters HEARD IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Jamestown, Tennessee

Municipal courts are the lowest level of courts in the U.S.. 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 assist their people or to save money on administrative costs. The cases that will be heard by a municipal court can change based on on the municipality, but typically include traffic matters, small criminal charges and code infractions.

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

What’s the process for cases in the municipal court in Jamestown?

Municipal courts are the first level of the court system in the United States. They have jurisdiction over minor crimes, traffic crimes, and other civil matters. Municipal courts are popularly known city courts or town courts. Matters 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 time.

Judges preside over hearings to determine:

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

The typical process of a Municipal Court matter

The common path of a municipal courthouse case can be tricky. The next portion is an overview of the most common steps involved in a regular municipal court matter.

Step One: Issuance of Summons

A summons from the court is sent when someone has been charged with violating a city rule or state law. The citizen who has received the court summons will need to appear at their assigned time and location, which is usually the municipal courtroom, to answer for the charge(s) against them. If they never appear, they may be found guilty in absentia and could be fined up to $1k or given a jail sentence if it’s a serious enough offense.

Second Step: Appearance before Judge or Magistrate

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

Municipal Court Penalties in Jamestown, TN

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

A violation is an offense that carries a penalty of $500 or less, while a misdemeanor can possess penalties up to $1000 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 charges in municipal courthouses vary depending on the severity of an crimes. For example, if you are caught with marijuana without having a prescription for it then you could be fined up to $2,000 or spend up to six months in jail.

Jamestown Municipal Court Records

Municipal Court records from a municipal court may 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 case 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.

Common Questions ABOUT the Jamestown Municipal Court

What is municipal court in Jamestown, Tennessee?

In Tennessee, the municipal court is a lower court with civil and criminal jurisdiction within a city or municipality. Municipal courts have a small jurisdiction and have limited authority as well, dealing only with petty crimes and misdemeanor charges.

What does the municipal court handle in Jamestown, Tennessee?

Depending on the area 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. More serious cases/crimes are handled by higher authorities.

How many judges does the Jamestown Municipal Court have?

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

How are cases heard in municipal courts in Tennessee?

A municipal courthouse judge may be either elected or appointed to serve for a set term of years or until retirement. Judges are commonly chosen by precincts with each precinct’s results judged according to population. Municipal magistrates are often not attorneys but have some legal training and must finish several hours of ongoing courses every year to maintain their credentials.