Frequently Asked Questions

    1.  A Police Officer gave me a ticket. What do I do now?
    2.  I pled guilty to a traffic violation and paid the fine without going to court. I also had to pay court cost even though I didnít go to court. Why?
    3.  What is CRO and when does it apply?
    4.  What is the procedure for getting a warrant to have someone arrested?
    5.  When is a warrant issued and when is a summons issued?
 
    Q.  A Police Officer gave me a ticket. What do I do now?
    A. 

Many traffic violations can be paid without going to court. To determine if a Particular violation would allow you to plead guilty to a magistrate and avoid going to court, call 256-442-9775 ext. 106. The magistrate will tell you if your violation requires you to come to court. If it does not, the magistrate will tell you how much your fine and court cost will be.



    Q.  I pled guilty to a traffic violation and paid the fine without going to court. I also had to pay court cost even though I didnít go to court. Why?
    A. 

The amount you pay consists of the fine and the court cost added together for the total amount. Court Cost is required by the State even though you may not go to court. The court is required to remit, as provided by law or rules of criminal procedure, all money designated to be paid and to pay the cost to the officials designated to receive it at the state level. The only way the court cost will not be paid is if a certain law states that no court cost will be paid for that particular offense or if the judge orders (in writing) that you do not have to pay the court cost for a particular offense.



    Q.  What is CRO and when does it apply?
    A. 

CRO is the Court Referral Office. This is an office required by law to help people with substance abuse programs. Anyone who is arrested for an offense involving drugs or alcohol must be evaluated by the Court Referral Office and then complete the program they have been ordered into. If you do not get the required evaluation or complete the Court Referral program you will be brought back to court and may end up in jail for contempt of court.



    Q.  What is the procedure for getting a warrant to have someone arrested?
    A. 

You must contact the Police Department. An officer will prepare an incident report and a written statement of the facts of the incident. You will then appear before the magistrate who will put you under oath. The magistrate will examine your documents and ask you questions. The magistrate may also speak to any witnesses to the incident. Once the magistrate had determined that there is probable cause to believe the defendant committed the offense, a warrant or summons will be issued. If the magistrate does not find probable cause to believe that an offense has been committed no warrant or summons will be issued.



    Q.  When is a warrant issued and when is a summons issued?
    A.  Neither will be issued without finding probable cause. Once that is determined, the magistrate decides whether to issue a summons or a warrant.