Conflicts brew between Stevens County Superior and District court

Laura Martin | Statesman-Examiner
Mel Anderson
S-E Staff Reporter

A lawsuit was filed against District Court Judge Gina Tveit for refusing to allow Stevens County Superior Court to file orders in District Court cases.

District courts can handle misdemeanor criminal cases. The superior court hears all felony cases. When a person is arrested, the person goes in front of a judge and the judge decides whether there’s enough evidence to keep the person in jail. The judge also sets bail. That first hearing has been historically done by the district court.

The conflict between district and superior courts started in September when the superior court announced that they would conduct all hearings for people in jail on felony offenses.

Then in January that changed again. On January 29, Evelyn Bell, the Superior Court Administrator, sent an email to both district and superior court officials announcing that all people who had been arrested appearances, for both felony and misdemeanors, would be heard in superior court.

The full story is available online here or by picking up the Feb. 14, 2018 edition of the S-E.

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