1997 Regular Session
To: Judiciary B
By: Representative Endt
House Bill 48
AN ACT TO AMEND SECTION 99-33-2, MISSISSIPPI CODE OF 1972, TO REVISE THE ASSIGNING OF COURTROOMS FOR CERTAIN JUSTICE COURTS; AND FOR RELATED PURPOSES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI:
SECTION 1. Section 99-33-2, Mississippi Code of 1972, is amended as follows:
99-33-2. (1) Anyone bringing a criminal matter in the justice court shall lodge the affidavit with the judge or clerk of the justice court. The clerk shall record all affidavits and shall, as far as practicable, assign criminal cases to the justice court judges in the county on a rotating basis to ensure equal distribution of the cases among the judges of the county; however, in all counties in which the courtrooms provided by the county for use of the justice court judges are located in more than one (1) place in the county, the clerk, in addition to assigning cases to the judges on a rotating basis, shall also assign a courtroom for each case, such assignment shall be made based upon the proximity of the courtroom to the defendant's residence or place of business.
(2) When the case has been recorded and assigned and all necessary process issued, the clerk shall, within two (2) working days, forward certified copies of all documents pertaining to the case to the justice court judge to which the case is assigned for further processing.
(3) Within forty-eight (48) hours of the receipt of any criminal affidavit lodged with a justice court judge, the justice court judge shall forward such affidavit and all documents pertaining thereto to the clerk of the justice court for the recording of such affidavit and documents and the assignment of the case as provided in subsection (1) of this section. Any justice court judge who willfully fails or refuses to comply with this subsection shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and shall be punished by a fine of not more than Five Hundred Dollars ($500.00), or by imprisonment in the county jail not more than six (6) months, or both.
SECTION 2. This act shall take effect and be in force from and after its passage.