June 30, 1982
|TO:||All Magistrates and Municipal Judges
|FROM:||George A. Markert, Assistant Director
|RE:||Municipal Judges' Summary Court Report Forms|
Pursuant to an Order of Chief Justice Lewis, a copy of which is in the ORDERS section of the Bench Book, the Summary Court Report Form is to be mailed in sufficient time to be received by this office by the fifteenth (15th) of the month following the month being reported. For example, your June report must be received by this office on or before July 15, 1982.
There are several judges who have been consistently tardy in submitting their reports. Others submit reports every other month or quarterly. This office will closely monitor compliance with this new requirement.
Some judges are already aware that the Highway Department is now forwarding us a random listing of cases more than sixty (60) days old. We are checking this listing with the monthly reports and have found some non-compliance with the requirement that all criminal cases pending for more than sixty (60) days must be listed as part of the Summary Court Report Form. Some magistrates have incorrectly failed to report a case as pending if bond was not posted. If the arrest warrant or the green copy of the Uniform Traffic Summons has been filed with your office, the case is pending as of the filing date, regardless of whether the case has been continued, or whether the defendant is on PTI, or whether a bench warrant has been issued for bringing the defendant to trial.(2) Therefore, you should use the first opportunity to correct your Summary Court Report Form, if you have incorrectly assumed the status of a case. If you have any questions regarding this memorandum, or the status of particular cases, please call this office.
2. The far better practice in disposing of a case of a guilty defendant who has not appeared for trial is to try him in his absence, and issue a bench warrant to bring the defendant before you to pay a fine, or serve a jail term. The case is ended, for your reporting purposes, at the time he is tried in his absence. If you issue a bench warrant for him to stand trial, you must report the case as pending until he is actually tried, he is given proper notice of trial and then tried in his absence, or the case is dismissed.