If you are ever arrested or charged with a crime heading Westbound on I-40 or West of the of the Black Mountains that border the Lake Mead National Recreation Area and Golden Valley to the East, you will find yourself within the court jurisdiction and venue for the Bullhead City Justice Court. If you are arrested or charged with a crime in the Bullhead City Limits, you would be under the jurisdiction of the Bullhead City Municipal Court.
The Bullhead City Justice Court and the Bullhead City Municipal Court are independent courts with their own separate locations. The Bullhead City Municipal Court is located within the Bullhead City Municipal Complex at 1255 Marina Blvd, Bullhead City, AZ 86442. The Bullhead City Justice Court is located at the Mohave County Justice Center at 2225 Trane Rd., Bullhead City, AZ.
The legal concept of “Venue” and “Jurisdiction” often are used interchangeably even though they have two unique legal meanings. Under our system of law, the concept of Jurisdiction embodies the authority of a court to hear a particular case while Venue is concerned with the geographic location of the Court.(See A.R.S. 22-301 and A.R.S. 22-402)
Municipal Courts and Justice Courts are referred to as courts of limited jurisdiction. These courts are only authorized under law to hear cases involving small claims, orders of protection, and criminal cases involving misdemeanors. Justice Courts handle felony cases only to the extent necessary to conduct preliminary hearings.
If you are charged with a misdemeanor crime (domestic violence, simple assault, personal drug possession, or DUI) you will have your case assigned and litigated within one of these municipal or justice courts.
The Bullhead City Justice Court precinct is defined by the Westbound lane of Interstate 40 to the area West of the Black Mountains. This area includes Bullhead City, Ft. Mohave, Topock, Mohave Valley, and Lake Mohave. The Bullhead City Municipal Court only has jurisdiction over cases committed inside the Bullhead City Limits while the Justice Court has jurisdiction over cases committed within the Bullhead City limits and outside the city limits.
The Bullhead City Prosecutor prosecutes cases in the Municipal Court and the Mohave County Attorney's Office prosecutes cases in the Bullhead City Justice Court.
By way of example, if you were pulled over for a criminal violation on U.S. 68 east of Bullhead City, you would be prosecuted in the justice court. A domestic violence incident in the Bullhead City limits or an OUI arrest at Rotary Park would be handled in the Bullhead City Municipal Court (Assuming a Bullhead City Police Officer made the arrest).
The Law Offices of Shawn B. Hamp, has extensive experience in handling criminal cases in both courts. Contact Us for case evaluation if you are ever facing charges in the Bullhead City Justice or Municipal Courts.
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