People cited for traffic infractions, misdemeanors and other non-felony violations in Steilacoom have been traveling to the next community over to handle their cases the past month.
On Oct. 1, Steilacoom officially entered into a contract with the Municipal Court of Lakewood and University Place. That means the enhanced services that come with the court – everything from a fully staffed, five-day-a-week front desk to prosecution and public defense to probation and electronic home monitoring – are now available to Washington’s oldest town. The contract includes everything but police and jail services.
“It’s a big benefit to Steilacoom residents,” Court Administrator Deana Wright said. “They get all of the services that come with our Municipal Court, which will create a cost savings for its residents. It’s also more convenient, seeing that we’re physically located just up the hill.”
Before, Steilacoom offered its own municipal court that took place only 1 ½ times per month. In 2012, the town had some 1,100 cases, 900 of which were related to traffic and parking violations.
In 2012, the Municipal Court of Lakewood and University Place handled more than 27,000 violations.
In Lakewood, almost 12,000 of those were photo-enforcement violations, while another 9,600 were issued for traffic infractions. Some 4,000 were misdemeanor cases.
In University Place, the court handled 649 traffic infractions and 735 misdemeanors.
The Municipal Court is open 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, at Lakewood City Hall, 6000 Main Street SW. It can be reached at 253-512-2258.