Port Gibson Municipal Court – Port Gibson, MS

by | Oct 26, 2021

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

Port Gibson Municipal Court INformation

Court: Port Gibson Municipal Court
Address: “PO Box 607, Port Gibson, MS 39150”
Phone: 601-437-4234

City: Port Gibson
County: Claiborne
State: Mississippi

What is the role of the Port Gibson Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are routinely called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” This means that they deal with minor crimes, civil cases, and traffic violations. Courthouses like Port Gibson Municipal Court are the first level of court for this group of matters.

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 family law matters, accident cases, more serious criminal charges, 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, while the circuits courts handle felony cases and more expansive civil cases.

TYPES OF affairs seen IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Port Gibson, Mississippi

Municipal courts are the bottom rung of courthouses in the U.S.. 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 assist their people or to save money on administrative costs. The matters that will be heard by a municipal court vary depending on the municipality, but typically include traffic crimes, criminal misdemeanors and code infractions.

You will not see a set definition for what establishes a misdemeanor versus a felony charge, but generally speaking felonies would require more time in jail than misdemeanor crimes 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 Port Gibson?

Municipal courts are the lowest level of the court system in the United States. They have jurisdiction over minor crimes, traffic violations, and other civil matters. Municipal courts are often known as city courts or town courts. Cases are handled by a magistrate who is usually a lawyer, judge, or retired judge. Magistrates may be appointed by the mayor or city council board to assist for a specific period of time.

Judges manage hearings to determine:

  • Probable cause for an arrest
  • Set bail amounts and 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 protect evidence from crime locations
  • start preliminary examinations to learn if there is enough evidence to mount a charge

The typical process of a Municipal Court Case

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

Step One: An Issuance of Summons

A summons from the court is issued when someone has been charged with violating a local ordinance or state law. The person who has received the summons will need to be present at their assigned time and place, which is usually the municipal courtroom, to respond for the charge(s) against them. If they never appear, 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.

Step Two: Appearance before Judge or Magistrate

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

Municipal Court Penalties in Port Gibson, MS

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

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

Port Gibson 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 a person might need to depend on the type of charge they have before the court, where it’s at in the process, and what kind of of information is needed by law to be available.

Common Questions ABOUT the Port Gibson Municipal Court

What is municipal court in Port Gibson, Mississippi?

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

What does the municipal court handle in Port Gibson, Mississippi?

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

How many judges does the Port Gibson Municipal Court have?

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

How are cases heard in municipal courts in Mississippi?

A municipal court judge may be either elected or appointed to serve for a set term of years or until retirement. Judges are commonly elected by the people with each precinct’s results evaluated based on population. Municipal magistrates are often not lawyers but have some legal education and must finish many hours of ongoing courses every year to maintain their licenses.