Pelahatchie Municipal Court

Pelahatchie Municipal Court

Pelahatchie is a town in Rankin County, Mississippi, with a population of approximately 2,000. Some say Pelahatchie means “Crooked Creek” in the Choctaw language, while others say it means “so big” or “hurricane creek.” The first settlers to Pelahatchie migrated from the Carolinas and Virginia, settling near the creek. It is believed a man with Indian blood, Billy Goforth owned significant acreage in the area which eventually became Pelahatchie. The location of Pelahatchie was recognized by the Historical Commission of Mississippi when a marker was placed to designate the boundary between Doak’s Stand and Dancing Rabbit Creek—four miles east of Pelahatchie. The Choctaw Indians ceded 5,500,000 acres of land in the central and western parts of Mississippi when the treaty at Doak’s Stand was signed, opening up the area for white settlers coming from Tennessee, the Carolinas, Alabama and Georgia.

Pelahatchie narrowly escaped being destroyed after the fall of Vicksburg when General Sherman followed the Old Stage Road east of Brandon rather than the railroad. The A & V Railway came through Pelahatchie in 1858, opening up the area to the outside world even more. In 1891 there were only three established schools in the county, with one of them being in Pelahatchie. A grocery store, a general mercantile and a saloon soon followed. As progress continued, a hotel in the area became necessary as well as a Farmers Alliance Shed and stalls to house horses and oxen of visitors to the area.

By 1910 Pelahatchie had a population of 943 by 1910, primarily due to a new sawmill in town, the Lockwood Lumber Company. This sawmill was followed by the Appalonia Lumber Company, the Pearl River Valley Lumber Company and the Gamill Lumber Company. In 1934 the Pearl River Valley Lumber Company burned to the ground, leaving more than 1,000 people without a job, and causing a significant decline in the Pelahatchie population. The Pelahatchie Poultry company came to the area in 1930, and was, notably, one of the first poultry processing companies to utilize assembly line processing. One of the premier events in Pelahatchie is the annual Muscadine Jubilee which brings thousands of people into the area to pay homage to the muscadine grape—a famed ingredient in southern wines.

Pelahatchie Municipal Court

Pelahatchie Municipal Court is located at 108 North Brooks Street, Pelahatchie, MS. Judge Will Hyche presides over the Pelahatchie Municipal Court. The Pelahatchie Police Department have jurisdiction over civil and criminal offenses within the city limits. Mississippi Highway Patrol and the Rankin County Sheriff’s Department can also arrest individuals committing a criminal offense within the city limits of Pelahatchie.

Felonies and Misdemeanors in the State of Mississippi

Felonies are the most serious type of criminal offense which can be committed. Felony offenses almost always have the potential for jail or prison time as well as large fines. Although some states separate felony offenses into sub-categories, such as a first-degree felony, a second-degree felony and so on, the state of Mississippi classifies felonies a bit differently, simply listing the penalties for the individual criminal offense. In Mississippi, a conviction for a felony will result in a minimum of one year in jail or prison, up to life in prison or, in the case of a capital offense, the death penalty.

Capital offenses in the state of Mississippi include treason, hijacking an airplane and capital murder. Although felonies are typically violent crimes, there are instances where a Mississippi felony can be a non-violent crime such as counterfeiting, embezzlement or obtaining money or property under false pretenses. Violent Mississippi felonies include murder, manslaughter, aggravated assault, aggravated domestic violence, sexual abuse of a minor, kidnapping, rape, arson, child abuse, sexual battery of a child, human trafficking and touching a child for lustful purposes. In addition to jail or prison time, a person in Mississippi convicted of a felony offense will also have fines imposed, sometimes in the tens of thousands of dollars.

Misdemeanor offenses are considered criminal offenses and can be elevated to a felony status when aggravating factors are present. Misdemeanor offenses in the state of Mississippi can include the following:

  • First-offense DUI
  • Shoplifting less than $500
  • Petty theft
  • Carrying a concealed weapon
  • Possession of less than 30 grams of marijuana
  • Simple battery

A felony conviction can bring consequences other than those imposed by the court, such as an inability to obtain employment, an inability to vote, an inability to rent a home, an inability to own a firearm and an inability to obtain a federal loan for college or a professional license. Misdemeanor offenses in the state of Mississippi are sometimes elevated to a felony status when there are aggravating factors present. As an example, simple assault is typically a misdemeanor offense. When a person commits simple assault on a police officer or other person included in this class of protected individuals, then the charges can be increased to felony charges.

Do I Need an Attorney for a Misdemeanor Charge?

A criminal defense attorney can help anyone charged with a criminal offense, whether a felony or misdemeanor. While a misdemeanor conviction is much less serious, it still goes on your criminal record. A potential employer who sees the misdemeanor conviction may decide not to hire that person, even though his or her qualifications are otherwise very good. Most people simply do not realize that their criminal record can potentially follow them for a very long time—whether felonies or misdemeanors. In other words, one mistake can alter a life forever. Suppose you planned to go to college on a federal student loan, obtain a degree then a professional license and go to work in your chosen field. That mistake you made, which resulted in a criminal conviction, could completely put a halt to all your plans, goals and dreams. Because of this, it is particularly important that you speak to an experienced Mississippi criminal defense attorney as soon as possible after you have been charged with a criminal offense. Your future depends on it.

Contact Our Pelahatchie Criminal Defense Lawyers

If you are arrested and charged with a crime in Pelahatchie, Jackson, Hattiesburg, Meridian, or anywhere in the State of Mississippi, you need to fight for your rights and protect your freedom. The best way to do this is to hire an experienced Jackson criminal defense attorney immediately.

At Coxwell & Associates, PLLC, our attorneys believe in fighting aggressively for our clients and we can build a defense that is designed to expose the holes in the prosecution’s case against you. Contact Coxwell & Associates today at (601) 265-7766.

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