McAlester Municipal Court – McAlester, OK

by | Oct 26, 2021

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

McAlester Municipal Court INformation

Court: McAlester Municipal Court
Address: “28 East Washington Street, PO Box 578, McAlester, OK 74502”
Phone: 918-421-4939

City: McAlester
County: Pittsburg
State: Oklahoma

What is the role of the McAlester Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are often called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” Which means that they work with minor criminal charges, civil matters, and traffic incidents. Courthouses like McAlester Municipal Court are the first level of court for these types of cases.

In other situations, 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, personal injury cases, more serious criminal infractions, or contract disputes.

County courthouses have the jurisdiction to deal with misdemeanors and civil actions that won’t exceed the amount of $15k, while the circuits courts handle felonies and larger civil matters.

TYPES OF Legal Matters seen IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in McAlester, Oklahoma

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 locales share municipal courts with other municipalities.

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

There is no set definition for what constitutes a misdemeanor charge versus a felony case, 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 is the procedure for cases in the municipal court in McAlester?

Municipal courts are the first tier of the court system in the United States. They have jurisdiction over minor crimes, traffic tickets, 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 time period.

Judges 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
  • Distribute search warrants to police officers in order to protect evidence from crime locations
  • start preliminary inquiries to learn if there is enough evidence to charge

The usual process of a Municipal Court matter

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

Step One: Issuance of Summons

A summons is sent when someone has been charged with violating a city ordinance or state law. The individual who has received the summons from the court will need to appear at their assigned time and courthouse, which is usually the municipal courtroom, to respond for the charge(s) against them. If they don’t come, they may be found guilty anyways and could be fined up to $1000 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 McAlester, OK

Penalties change often, which is why it’s best to speak with licensed attorney. The material below represents common penalties, but may not be accurate for the McAlester Municipal Court. 

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

McAlester Municipal Court Records

Municipal Court records from a municipal government could 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 type of case they have before the court, where it’s at in the process, and what type of information is required by law to be present.

FAQs ABOUT the McAlester Municipal Court

What is municipal court in McAlester, Oklahoma?

In Oklahoma, the municipal court is a lower court with civil and criminal jurisdiction within a city or municipality. Municipal courts will have a small location and have limited authority as well, dealing only with petty offenses and misdemeanors.

What does the municipal court handle in McAlester, Oklahoma?

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. More serious cases/crimes are deal with by higher authorities.

How many judges does the McAlester Municipal Court have?

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

How are cases heard in municipal courts in Oklahoma?

A municipal courthouse judge may be either elected or appointed to serve for a set term of years or until retirement. Judges are commonly elected by precincts with each precinct’s results judged according to the number of people. Municipal magistrates are often not attorneys but have some legal training and must complete multiple hours of continuing material every period to maintain their licenses.