[HISTORY: Adopted by the City Council of the City of El Reno 9-1-1972 as Ch. 21 of the 1972 Code. Amendments noted where applicable.]
[Amended 5-17-1978 by Ord. No. 2317]
This chapter shall govern the organization and operation of the Municipal Court of the City of El Reno, Oklahoma, as placed in operation by resolution in accordance with applicable state law and as filed with the County Clerk of Canadian County and the Clerk of the Oklahoma Supreme Court. To the extent of any conflict, this chapter supersedes and controls all other ordinances.
The penal ordinances of the City shall be compiled and published in permanent form, either published or typed, periodically, but not less than once every 10 years; any supplements shall be published on at least a biannual basis. No penal ordinance shall be enforced unless it is reflected in such a permanent volume or supplement if the ordinance was adopted more than one year before the latest compilation or supplement.
When the municipality has compiled and published its permanent volume or biannual supplement of penal ordinances, the City Council shall adopt a resolution notifying the public of the publication. A copy of the resolution shall be filed in office of the County Clerk of Canadian County and in the office of the Clerk of the Oklahoma Supreme Court. A copy of the permanent volume and each biannual supplement shall be deposited free of cost by the municipality in the following manner:
The permanent volume or biannual supplement of compiled penal ordinances shall be available for purchase by the public through the office of the City Clerk at a price as set from time to time by the City Council in the form of a resolution.
As used in this chapter, unless the context requires a different meaning, the following words shall have the meanings ascribed to them in this section:
- CHIEF OF POLICE
- The peace officer in charge of the police force of this City.
- The City Clerk, including any deputy or member of the office staff of the City Clerk while performing the duties of the Clerk's office.
- The Municipal Court of this City.
- The judge of the Municipal Court of this City, including any acting judge or alternate judge thereof, as provided for by the statutes of this state and this chapter.
- JUDICIAL DISTRICT
- The district court judicial district of the State of Oklahoma wherein the government of this City is situated.
The Municipal Court shall be operative on and after the 13th day of January 1969.
The court shall exercise original jurisdiction to hear and determine all prosecutions wherein a violation of any provision of this Code or of any other ordinance of this City is charged, including any such prosecutions transferred to the court in accordance with applicable law.
[Amended 2-2-1988 by Ord. No. 2574]
There shall be one judge, and one or more alternate judges of the court, the same to be appointed by the City Manager for an indefinite term.
The judge of the Municipal Court must be duly licensed to practice law in the State of Oklahoma, except as provided in Subsection B. Such licensed attorney need not reside in the City.
If no attorney licensed to practice law in the state residing in Canadian County, and acceptable to the Mayor and City Council, is willing to accept the appointment as judge, the Mayor, with the consent of the Council, may appoint as judge a person residing within the City, who must be at least 25 years of age at the time of the appointment, subject to the requirements and limitations set forth in 11 O.S. § 27-104, as amended.
[Amended 2-2-1988 by Ord. No. 2575]
The official term of the judge shall be indefinite. The judge, or any alternate or acting judge, shall be appointed by the City Manager and shall serve at the pleasure of the majority of the City Council. Said removal shall be as provided in § 28-13.
The judge of the court shall receive a salary to be fixed from time to time by the City Council by resolution or motion, to be paid in the same manner as the salaries of other officials of this City.
The judge may prescribe rules, consistent with the laws of the state and with the ordinances of the City, for the proper conduct of the business of the court.
The judge of the Municipal Court may serve as judge of other municipal courts, if such service may be accomplished consistently with his duties as judge of this court, with the consent of the City Council.
The judge may engage in the practice of law in other courts, but he shall not accept employment inconsistent with his duties as judge, or arising out of facts which give rise to or are connected with cases within the jurisdiction of the court, pending therein or which might become the subject of proceedings therein.
There shall be appointed an alternate judge of the court, possessed of the same qualifications as the judge. His appointment shall be for the same term and made in the same manner as the judge. He shall sit as acting judge of the court in any case if the judge is absent from the court, unable to act as judge or disqualified from acting as judge in the case.
If at any time there is no judge or alternate judge, duly appointed and qualified, available to sit as judge, the Mayor shall appoint some person, possessing the qualifications required by this chapter for the judge, who shall preside as acting judge over the court in the disposition of pending matters until such time as a judge or alternate judge shall be available.
[Amended 6-5-2007 by Ord. No. 5013]
An alternate judge or an acting judge shall be paid an hourly fee as fixed from time to time by the City Council by resolution. Such fee shall be for the hours actually devoted to the performance of his or her duties; and in such event the regular judge shall not be paid for those hours accordingly. An alternate or acting judge who sits for an entire month shall receive the salary fixed for the judge in whose stead he sits; and in such event the regular judge shall receive no salary for such month.
Judges shall be subject to removal from office by the City Council for the causes prescribed by the Constitution and laws of this state for the removal of public officers. Proceedings for removal shall be instituted by the filing of a verified written petition, setting forth facts sufficient to constitute one or more legal grounds for removal. Petitions may be signed and filed by the Mayor or by 25 or more qualified electors of this City. In the latter event, verification may be executed by one or more of the petitioners. The Council shall set a date for hearing the matter, and shall cause notice thereof, together with a copy of the petition, to be served personally upon the judge at least 10 days before the hearing. At the hearing, the judge shall be entitled to representation by counsel, to present testimony and to cross-examine the witnesses against him, and to have all evidence against him presented in open hearing. So far as they can be made applicable, the provisions of the Oklahoma Administrative Procedures Act governing individual proceedings (75 O.S. §§ 309 through 317 and any amendments or additions thereto in effect at the time of the hearing) shall govern removal proceedings hereunder. Judgment of removal shall be entered only upon individual votes, by a majority of all members of the City Council, in favor of such removal.
A vacancy in the office of judge shall occur if the incumbent dies, resigns, ceases to possess the qualifications for the office or is removed, and the removal proceedings have been affirmed finally in judicial proceedings or are no longer subject to judicial review. Upon the occurrence of a vacancy in the office of judge, the Mayor shall appoint a successor to complete the unexpired term, upon the same procedure as an original appointment is made.
In prosecutions before the court, no change of venue shall be allowed, but the judge before whom the case is pending may certify his disqualification or he may be disqualified from sitting under the terms, conditions and procedure provided by law for courts of record. If the judge is disqualified, the matter shall be heard by an alternate or acting judge, appointed as provided in this chapter.
The City Clerk, or a deputy designated by him, shall be ex officio Clerk of the Court. He shall assist the judge in recording the proceedings of the court and in preparing writs, processes and other papers. He shall administer oaths required in proceedings before the court. He shall enter all pleadings, processes and proceedings in the dockets of the court. He shall perform such other clerical duties relating to the proceedings of the court as the judge shall direct.
The Clerk of the Court shall give bond to the City, in the form prescribed by state law, in the sum of $1,000. Such bond shall be approved by the City Council and shall be filed with the City Clerk.
[Amended 5-17-1978 by Ord. No. 2317; 6-5-2007 by Ord. No. 5013]
There is no duty on the part of the City or any of its officers or employees to formally prosecute actions in the Municipal Court; however, the City Manager may hire an attorney duly licensed to practice law in the State of Oklahoma to serve in the capacity of Municipal Prosecutor, and the City Manager may determine the compensation for such position based on the qualifications and experience of the applicant. The Municipal Prosecutor need not reside in the City. In the absence of a prosecuting officer, the judge shall proceed with the case and hear evidence and examine witnesses in such a manner as he may deem necessary to effect justice.
[Amended 11-3-1992 by Ord. No. 2695; 11-3-1992 by Ord. No. 2696; 6-5-2007 by Ord. No. 5015; 11-15-2016 by Ord. No. 9102]
The City Manager may employ a properly qualified person assigned to the Police Department under the supervision of the Chief of Police or other designee to perform the duties and responsibilities of City Marshal(s). The City Marshal(s) shall have primary responsibility for the enforcement of municipal property code violations, service of municipal summons and arrest warrants, court security, the transport of arrestees, supervision of court-ordered community service workers and may perform other duties as assigned by the Police Chief. The City Marshal(s) has peace officer authority and may carry a firearm and enforce other City ordinance, state statute as necessary in the performance of his primary responsibilities as directed by the Chief of Police. With the permission of the City Manager, the Chief of Police may use the City Marshal(s) in other capacities within the City as conditions warrant. In the absence of a City Marshal(s), the Police Chief may assign a police officer to perform the primary duties and responsibilities of the City Marshal(s).
[Amended 11-3-1992 by Ord. No. 2695; 11-3-1992 by Ord. No. 2696; 6-5-2007 by Ord. No. 5015; 11-15-2016 by Ord. No. 9102]
The City Marshal(s) and any member of the police force of this municipality shall execute all writs and other processes issued by the Municipal Court, except as otherwise provided.
All prosecutions for violation of this Code or other ordinances of the City shall be styled "The City of El Reno, Oklahoma vs. (naming defendant or defendants)." Except as otherwise provided in Chapter 343 of this Code with respect to traffic violations, prosecutions shall be initiated by the filing of a written complaint, subscribed and verified by the person making complaint, and setting forth concisely the offense charged.
Upon the filing of a complaint charging a violation of this Code or other ordinance of the City, the judge, unless he determines to issue a warrant of arrest, or unless the defendant previously has been issued a citation or has been arrested and has given bond for his appearance, shall issue a summons, naming the person charged, specifying his address or place of residence, if known, stating the offense with which he is charged and giving him notice to answer the charge in the court on a day certain, containing a provision for the official return of the summons, and including such other pertinent information as may be necessary.
The summons shall be served by delivering a copy to the defendant personally. If he fails to appear and to answer the summons within the prescribed period, a warrant shall be issued for his arrest, as provided by this chapter.
Except as otherwise provided in this Code, upon the filing of a complaint approved, by endorsement, by the City Attorney or by the judge, there shall be issued a warrant of arrest, in substantially the following form:
Upon arrest, or upon appearance without arrest in response to citation or summons, or at any other time before trial, before or after arraignment, the defendant shall be eligible to be released upon giving bail for his appearance in an amount and upon conditions fixed by the judge, who shall prescribe appropriate rules of court for the receipt of bail. In case of arrests made at night or under other conditions of emergency or when the judge is not available, the rules shall authorize the Chief of Police, or his designated representative, to accept a temporary cash bond in a sufficient amount to secure the appearance of the accused, but not more than the maximum fine provided by ordinance for the offense charged unless the defendant has a previous history of failing to appear according to the terms or conditions of a bond, in which case the amount of the cash bond shall not exceed $1,000.
Editor’s Note: Former § 28-24.1, Posting of bail bond by licensed bail bonding company, added 5-6-2008 by Ord. No. 6006, which immediately followed this section, was repealed 5-4-2010 by Ord. No. 8007.
Upon making his appearance before the court, the defendant shall be arraigned. The judge or the City Attorney shall read the complaint to the defendant, inform him of his legal rights, and of the consequences of conviction, and ask him whether he pleads guilty or not guilty. If the defendant pleads guilty, the court may proceed to judgment and sentence or may continue the matter for subsequent disposition. If the plea is not guilty, the court may proceed to try the case, or may set it for hearing at a later date.
Before a trial commences in the Municipal Court, either party, upon good cause shown, may obtain a reasonable postponement thereof.
The defendant must be present in person at the trial of his case in the Municipal Court.
In all trials in the Municipal Court, as to matters not covered by this chapter or by statutes relating to municipal courts, or by rules duly promulgated by the Supreme Court of Oklahoma, the procedure applicable to trials of misdemeanors in the district courts shall apply to the extent that they can be made effective.
Witnesses in any proceeding in the court, other than police officers, peace officers or prosecuting witnesses, shall be entitled to fees as set from time to time by the City Council in the form of a resolution. No witness shall receive fees in more than one case for the same period of time. A defendant seeking to subpoena witnesses must deposit with the Clerk of the Court a sum sufficient to cover fees for one day of attendance for each witness to be summoned, but such deposit shall not be required from an indigent defendant who files an affidavit setting out:
The names of no more than three witnesses;
That the defendant, by reason of his poverty, is unable to provide the fees allowed by law;
That the testimony of said witnesses is material; and
That their attendance at the trial is necessary for his proper defense.
The fees of such witnesses shall be paid by the City.
At the close of a trial in the Municipal Court, judgment must be rendered immediately by the judge, who shall cause it to be entered in his docket.
If judgment of the court is of acquittal, and the defendant is not to be detained for any other legal cause, he must be discharged at once.
If the defendant pleads guilty or is convicted after trial, the court must render judgment thereon, fixing the penalty within the limits prescribed by this Code or other applicable ordinance and imposing sentence accordingly.
[Amended 5-17-1978 by Ord. No. 2317; 9-15-1983 by Ord. No. 2454; 4-5-1988 by Ord. No. 2582; 7-1-1997 by Ord. No. 2844; 8-1-2006 by Ord. No. 4023]
Whenever in this Code or in any ordinance of the City an act is prohibited or is made or declared to be unlawful, or wherever the doing of an act is required or the failure to do any act is declared to be unlawful, the violation of any such provision of this Code or any such ordinance shall be punishable by a fine or deferral fee in an amount not to exceed $750, unless the ordinance specifically provides for some other penalty not to exceed a fine or deferral fee of $750. Each day on which any violation of this Code or of any ordinance shall continue shall constitute a separate offense and shall be punishable as such. Traffic-related offenses relating to speeding or parking shall not exceed a fine or deferral fee of $200.
[Amended 4-5-1988 by Ord. No. 2583; 8-1-2006 by Ord. No. 4026]
A judgment that the defendant pay a fine may direct also that he be imprisoned until the fine is satisfied, at the rate of one day of imprisonment for each $50 of fine.
All prisoners confined to jail on conviction or on plea of guilty may be compelled, if their health permits, to work on the public streets, avenues, alleys, parks, buildings or other public premises or property. For each day of such work, the prisoner shall be credited for serving two days of imprisonment under his sentence.
The Chief of Police, subject to the direction of the City Manager, shall direct where the work referred to in Subsection B shall be performed. The head of the department in charge of the place where the work is to be performed, or some person designated by him, shall oversee the work. If a guard is necessary, the Chief of Police shall make provision therefor.
[Amended 9-15-1983 by Ord. No. 2456]
After conviction and sentencing of a defendant in the Municipal Court, the judge may suspend sentence in accordance with provisions of, and subject to the conditions and procedures imposed by, 11 O.S. §§ 27-123 and 27-124, and amendments thereto.
Cost of the prosecution shall be taxed against a person when the penalty assessed said person is a suspended sentence in the same manner as costs are taxed against an individual for a violation of any other ordinance of the City.
[Amended 2-2-1988 by Ord. No. 2576; 8-1-2006 by Ord. No. 4024]
The judge of the Municipal Court is hereby empowered to defer the imposition of a sentence or any part thereof and to authorize probation for a period not to exceed six months from the date of sentence, upon condition of the federal laws during the period of the deferral. Upon the successful completion of the probation term, the defendant shall be discharged without a court judgment of guilt, and the verdict, judgment of guilty or plea of guilty shall be expunged from the record and said charges shall be dismissed with prejudice to any further action. However, upon finding of the court that the conditions of probation have been violated, the municipal judge may enter a judgment of guilty.
If a deferred sentence is imposed, an administrative deferral fee in lieu of a fine not to exceed the original fine amount and any required fees may be imposed as costs in the case.
Obedience to the orders, rules and judgments made by the judge or by the court may be enforced by the judge, who may fine or imprison for contempt committed as to him while holding court, or committed against process issued by him, in the same manner and to the same extent as the district courts of this state.
The Clerk of the Court shall receive and receipt for forfeitures, fees, deposits and sums of money payable to the court. He shall pay to the Treasurer of the City, on the first and 15th day of each month, all money so received by him, except such special deposits or fees as shall be received by him to be disbursed by him for special purposes. All money so paid to the Treasurer shall be placed in the general fund of the City, or in such other fund as the City Council may direct, and it shall be used in the operation of the municipal government in accordance with budgetary arrangements governing the fund in which it is placed.
[Amended 5-17-1978 by Ord. No. 2317; 9-15-1983 by Ord. No. 2454; 4-5-1988 by Ord. No. 2582; 8-4-2009 by Ord. No. 7019]
When a person is convicted of a violation of this Code or of any ordinance of the City, the cost of prosecution in the amount as allowed by state law shall be taxed against such person, in addition to any fine which was imposed.
Upon conviction, in addition to the fine, the Clerk shall also collect such costs as may have accrued in the case.
[Amended 5-17-1978 by Ord. No. 2317; 9-15-1983 by Ord. No. 2454; 7-1-1997 by Ord. No. 2843]
In the event that an ordinance provides for a penalty or fine in excess of $500, excluding court costs, or imprisonment, or both such fine an imprisonment, the case shall be set for a jury trial unless the defendant and the municipality waive a jury. The waiver shall be in writing and may be signed at any time before trial, and shall be in substantially the following form:
The City Manager, City Clerk, Municipal Court Clerk or municipal judge may, in their discretion, waive a jury trial on behalf of the City. If a jury trial is waived by the defendant at any time after the jurors are selected, any costs thereby accrued shall be assessed against the defendant.
[Amended 5-17-1978 by Ord. No. 2317; 9-15-1983 by Ord. No. 2454]
The municipal judge shall by rule provide for jury terms and the scheduling of cases for jury trial.
Upon scheduling a matter for jury trial, the municipal judge shall tender a written request to the district judge of Canadian County for the selection of jurors. The request shall specify the number of prospective jurors required, and the request and selection shall conform to state law. The municipal judge, if he determines it to be necessary, may call for a supplemental list of jurors in the same manner as his original request.
Jurors shall be qualified in accordance with state law and may be exempted from jury duty as provided by state law.
The summons for jury may be served by any police officer of the El Reno Police Department or by registered or certified mail and shall be issued by the Municipal Court Clerk or municipal judge. The form of the summons shall be substantially as follows:
Failure to comply with a summons for jury duty shall be a violation punishable by a fine of $50 for each day of noncompliance.
The jury trial provided for herein shall consist of six jurors, and a verdict may be reached by concurrence of five jurors of those six.
[Amended 5-17-1978 by Ord. No. 2317; 9-15-1983 by Ord. No. 2454]
Costs in the Municipal Court shall be the total of any mileage, witness or jurors' fees accrued in any case, together with a charge for any nonjury trial and a charge for any jury trial in amounts as set from time to time by the City Council in the form of a resolution. The costs shall be assessed in addition to any fines or penalties otherwise provided.
[Amended 8-12-2014 by Ord. No. 9061]
Appeals from the Municipal Court shall be had in accordance with the procedures established by state law therefor, and the municipal judge shall take care that upon the filing of a proper appeal all necessary documents shall be timely forwarded to the Clerk of the District Court of Canadian County.
[Amended 8-6-1991 by Ord. No. 2658]
The Municipal Court Clerk is allowed to accept fines and dispose of cases which do not require a court appearance. The payment of the fine to the Municipal Court Clerk shall be deemed a final determination of the cause against the defendant.
The payment by the defendant of the fine shall constitute a plea of guilty to the alleged offense. Upon payment of the fine, the defendant shall be precluded from contesting the charge and shall be precluded from requesting an appearance before a judge.
If a defendant is not required to appear before a judge and chooses to pay the fine, the Municipal Court Clerk shall make the defendant fully aware that he has the option of contesting the alleged offense and appearing before a judge. The Municipal Court Clerk shall make these alternatives known to the defendant, but shall not advise the defendant.
The defendant should sign the back of the citation as proof that the defendant has been informed of his right to appear before a judge and contest the offense, and that due process was met.
At the end of the week, the Municipal Court Clerk shall prepare a disposition docket of those defendants who entered a plea of guilty and paid the appropriate fine (plus the fingerprint fee and state penalty assessment) without a court appearance. A copy of this docket should be sent to the Police Department so that officers will know which of their cases are not going to require a court appearance. The docket should also be signed or initialed by the judge at the next court session.
In addition to the collection of the fine, the Municipal Court Clerk must also collect the statutorily imposed state penalty assessment fee of $4, plus an additional separate fingerprint fee of $3 per offense. This applies to any offense punishable by a fine of $10 or more or by incarceration, excluding parking and standing violations.
Technology fee. A municipal court technology fee shall be and is hereby established in the amount of $15. The fee shall be in addition to and not in substitution for any and all costs, fees, fines, or penalties otherwise provided for by law, and assessed on every citation disposed of in the municipal court except those that are voided, declined for prosecution, dismissed without costs, or the defendant is acquitted. The revenues generated by this fee shall be used solely and exclusively for the submissions, operation, maintenance, repair, lease, and replacement of hardware, software, and peripheral technological equipment used in the operation, prosecution, and administration of the municipal court proceedings and criminal justice system of the City of El Reno, which shall include but is not limited to: computers, hardware, and software needs of the municipal court; audio, video, and other electronic technologies to assist with municipal court proceedings; Digi ticket lease funds; and the maintenance of said municipal court electronics.
[Added 8-14-2018 by Ord. No. 9153]
[Amended 9-1-1992 by Ord. No. 2688; 2-4-1997 by Ord. No. 2829; 10-7-1997 by Ord. No. 2850]
The Municipal Court of the City may assume jurisdiction of cases involving children under 18 years of age charged with violating municipal ordinances relating to illegal possession of firearms, vandalism, shoplifting, trespassing, assault, battery, assault and battery, truancy, curfews, possession of low-point beer as defined in 37 O.S. § 163.2, possession of alcoholic beverages as defined in 37 O.S. § 506, disorderly conduct, public intoxication and failure to appear for a court appearance or comply with a court order and any other municipal ordinances as agreed by the District Court, the District Attorney and the municipality. If a child is prosecuted for an offense in the Municipal Court, the child shall not be prosecuted for the same offense in the District Court.
A child under 18 years of age may be charged and prosecuted for violating such a municipal ordinance, provided that the maximum fine which may be imposed shall not exceed the maximum fine authorized by law. When assessing punishment, the court also may require appropriate community service work, not to exceed 90 hours, in lieu of a fine, if the product of multiplying the number of hours of community service work by the prevailing minimum wage does not result in a number which exceeds the maximum fine authorized by law, or restitution, or both community service work and restitution. In addition, the court may require the child to receive counseling or other community-based services, as necessary. If the child fails to complete the community service, the parents or legal guardians of the child who knew or should have known that the child failed to complete the community service may be charged with a misdemeanor of the child failing to complete community service, and upon conviction, the parent or guardian of such child who knew or should have known that such child failed to complete the community service may be fined an amount that is equal to the number of community service hours that are uncompleted by the child, multiplied by the hourly minimum wage.
In addition, during any calendar year, if a child who is a defendant in the Municipal Court fails to appear for a court date on more than one occasion; is convicted of two or more of the offenses listed in Subsection A of this section, which offenses occurred on different days; or fails to pay any fine or court cost properly assessed by the Municipal Court, the Court Clerk shall mail notice of such occurrence to the Department of Public Safety, which department shall thereafter suspend or deny driving privileges for such child for six months. The suspension of the child's driving privileges are subject to the applicable provisions of state law regarding modification of the suspension, or reinstatement.
The procedure to be followed by the Municipal Court when assuming jurisdiction over such offenses provided for by this section shall be in compliance with 10A O.S. § 1-1-101 et seq.
All municipal arrests and prosecution records for cases involving children under 18 years of age charged with illegal possession of firearms, vandalism, shoplifting, trespassing, assault, battery, assault and battery, truancy, curfews, possession of low-point beer as defined in 37 O.S. § 163.2, possession of alcoholic beverages as defined in 37 O.S. § 506, disorderly conduct, public intoxication and failure to appear for a court appearance or comply with a court order and any other municipal ordinances as agreed by the District Court, the District Attorney and the municipality, shall be kept confidential and shall not be open to public inspection except by order of the court as otherwise provided by 10A O.S. §§ 1-6-101 through 1-6-108 and 10 O.S. § 620.6.
Funds generated from fines paid pursuant to the agreement between the Municipal Court and the District Court shall be earmarked and used by the municipality to fund local programs which address problems of juvenile crime; any costs, including administrative costs, shall be retained by the City to be used in any manner consistent with the provisions of the Code of Ordinances of the City, the Charter of the City and the Oklahoma Statutes.
The City shall have the authority to take the steps necessary to implement the program.
Any fines and costs properly assessed against any child and which remain unpaid after three months may be assessed by the municipal judge against the child's parent, parents, legal guardian or legal custodian and collected and paid as provided for in Article XXVII of Title 11 of the Oklahoma Statutes; provided, however, that prior to such latter assessment, the Court Clerk shall give such child's parent, parents, legal guardian or legal custodian notice by certified mail to their place of residence or personal service of such action proposed to be taken.
[Amended 8-12-2014 by Ord. No. 9061]