Towanda Municipal Court – Towanda, KS

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 found at the city or county tier.

Towanda Municipal Court INformation

Court: Towanda Municipal Court
Address: “110 South 3rd Street, PO Box 160, Towanda, KS 67144”
Phone: 316-536-2243

City: Towanda
County: Butler
State: Kansas

What is the role of the Towanda Municipal Court?

Municipal Courts are often called “courts of limited jurisdiction.” Which means that they deal with minor criminal charges, civil matters, and traffic tickets. Courthouses like Towanda Municipal Court are the first level of court for this group of matters.

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

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

TYPES OF Matters seen IN A MUNICIPAL COURT in Towanda, Kansas

Municipal courts are the entry level of courthouses 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 service their population or to save money on administrative costs. The matters that may be heard by a municipal court vary depending on the municipality, but typically include traffic tickets, 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

how are cases managed in the municipal court in Towanda?

Municipal courts are the entry level of the court system in the United States. They have jurisdiction over minor crimes, traffic violations, 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 a lawyer, judge, or retired judge. Magistrates may be appointed by the mayor or city council board to assist for a specific time.

Judges manage hearings to determine:

  • Probable cause for arrest
  • Set bail amounts and terms 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 scenes
  • start preliminary examinations to learn if there is enough evidence to charge

The Process of a Municipal Court matter

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

First Step: An Issuance of Summons

A summons is given when a person has been charged with violating a local ordinance or state law. The individual who has received the summons will need to show up at their assigned time and place, which is usually the municipal courtroom, to respond for the charge(s) against them. If they fail to appear, they may be found guilty anyways and could be fined up to $1,000.00 or given a jail term if it’s a serious enough offense.

Second Step: 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 Towanda, KS

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 Towanda Municipal Court. 

A violation is a crime that has 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 crimes in municipal courts vary depending on the severity of an offenses. For example, if you are caught with marijuana without having a license for it then you will be fined up to $2,000 or spend up to six months in jail.

Towanda Municipal Court Records

Municipal Court records from a municipal government may 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 matter 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 Towanda Municipal Court

What is municipal court in Towanda, Kansas?

In Kansas, the municipal court is a lower court with civil and criminal matters within a town or municipality. Municipal courts thus have a small jurisdiction and have limited authority as well, dealing only with petty offenses and misdemeanor charges.

What does the municipal court handle in Towanda, Kansas?

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 Towanda Municipal Court have?

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

How are cases heard in municipal courts in Kansas?

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