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  1. #1

    Default Can a Judge Use Their Court to Enforce Compliance with a Different Court

    My question involves criminal law for the state of: Washington
    There is a misdemeanor warrant (Assault 4) out on the Eastern side of the state. The warrant is over 10 years old but still valid. Courts will not confirm warrant to LE on Western side of state. (Warrant confirmed only in issuing county)
    District court on Western side of state has a current misdemeanor cause for failure to register vehicle within 45 days.
    All required orders for cause have been met. District court judge is retaining "bench probation" until cause in Eastern side of state has been resolved and the warrant cleared.
    Basically, the District court judge is using her court to try and force compliance with clearing the warrant on the Eastern side of the state when the courts there have no interest in transporting across the state.
    All fines, fees, and issues have been resolved in the cause on the Western side, can the judge still hold probation and jail time over head simply to try and force compliance with another judge's cause? There would be no probation if the judge wasn't holding the case open in order to do this.
    If you are a reasonable person and I can convince you, then a reasonable argument can be made.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    California
    Posts
    20,485

    Default Re: Can a Judge Use Their Court to Enforce Compliance with a Different Court

    The answer to virtually any question that begins with the words, "Can a judge ....", is "Yes."

    You are free to speak to your attorney about this and see what they have to say.

    Have you considered taking care of the warrant on the east side of the state so that this is not hanging over you for the rest of your life? Having an active warrant can present all manner of surprises including impeding travel, prolonged detentions or arrests, lack of access to welfare and a number of government loans and benefits, etc. After 10 years, I strongly suspect the other jurisdiction would be willing to work out some sort of deal on the issue.
    **********
    Retired Cal Cop Sergeant & Teacher

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM

  3. #3

    Default Re: Can a Judge Use Their Court to Enforce Compliance with a Different Court

    The biggest reason I haven't taken care of the warrant on the other side of the state is financial. I'm on a fixed income and travel that far would be practically impossible financially. I contacted the court over there a while back but the judge there wasn't open to dismissing or discharging the case. Suspiciously this was "after" speaking to the judge from over here. We've got a kind of unwritten understanding. They won't mess with me or out me in jail as long as I don't ever go to their town again. I just wish I could get this judge to understand and accept that. So what exactly can this judge do to me? Violate me for some kind of contempt of court or probation violation? I'm not on any kind of active probation. Just what I think they call bench probation. Can she just keep violating me over and over or something? How long can she do this for?
    If you are a reasonable person and I can convince you, then a reasonable argument can be made.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    38,867

    Default Re: Can a Judge Use Their Court to Enforce Compliance with a Different Court

    As long as you are in violation of your probation, the judge can continue to enforce your probation. That can include being jailed.
    Not only could you be jailed since probation is given in lieu of jail, you may have your probation extended since you continue to be in violation.


    it would be in your best interest to find a way to settle the issue. Whether you seek help from friends or family or even try a go fund me page (or other similar sites) or anything else you can legally do to raise the funds, it appears the state has decided it’s time for you to pay your bill.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
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    7,780

    Default Re: Can a Judge Use Their Court to Enforce Compliance with a Different Court

    If you were ordered by the court to clear this up and you don't, yes the judge can violate you. You are a fugitive and as an officer of the court, it is part of the judge's job to address that.

    Also, bench probation is active probation. It's just not one where you do regular in-person reporting.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
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    California
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    Default Re: Can a Judge Use Their Court to Enforce Compliance with a Different Court

    They can call it informal probation, bench probation, or something else. Bottom line, as long as you are still ON probation, you are subject to the terms of said probation.

    As jk mentioned, it seems that the west state judge has decided that you need to follow the law and take care of your legal liability.
    **********
    Retired Cal Cop Sergeant & Teacher

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM

  7. #7

    Default Re: Can a Judge Use Their Court to Enforce Compliance with a Different Court

    Thank you to all who have taken the time to provide me the valuable information I needed. Although it's not the answer I might have preferred, I do believe that the information provided is correct. I guess it's time for me to quit procrastinating and just get this mess taken care of. Thanks again to all who have helped.
    Moderators please consider this thread closed.
    If you are a reasonable person and I can convince you, then a reasonable argument can be made.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Posts
    7,615

    Default Re: Can a Judge Use Their Court to Enforce Compliance with a Different Court

    Quote Quoting LeftCoastRick
    View Post
    Basically, the District court judge is using her court to try and force compliance with clearing the warrant on the Eastern side of the state when the courts there have no interest in transporting across the state.
    It's not the courts that have no interest in transporting you because the courts don't do that. It's the law enforcement agency (likely the sheriff) that does not want to incur that cost.

    Quote Quoting LeftCoastRick
    View Post
    All fines, fees, and issues have been resolved in the cause on the Western side, can the judge still hold probation and jail time over head simply to try and force compliance with another judge's cause? There would be no probation if the judge wasn't holding the case open in order to do this.
    Any court in the state could act to enforce an outstanding order of a state court.

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