Night Court

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Montgomery is one of the few cities in central Alabama to begin a night court and its getting high praise from attorneys and citizens.

Night court, held every Monday night, held its first session last week.

Citizens can air their grievances before a judge -- the complaints include trespassing, domestic violence and property damage.

Only three of the 47 cases scheduled last Monday were not handled. The city court administrator said more people are using night court because the hours are convenient and their cases are handled sooner. Usually about 60 days sooner when compared to day court proceedings.

Court Administrator Pat Murphy said he's budgeted about $75,000 annually for night court operations. An additional $50,000 from Mayor Bobby Bright was allocated. But Murphy said when funding runs out, which could be in less than a year, night court could be canceled.

Three assistant Municipal Judges rotate each Monday night. Prosecutors and public defenders take turns as well. Complaints filed by police are not handled in night court. Court proceedings start at 7 p.m. and remain in session until all cases are heard.