Delaware General Assembly



Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Delaware:

Section 1. Amend Title 21, Delaware Code, Section 704, by striking said section in its entirety and substituting in lieu thereof a new section to read as follows:

§ 704. Jurisdiction of offenses

(a) A person arrested without a warrant in the City of Wilmington for a violation of any section of this title shall be taken before a Judge of the Municipal Court for the City of Wilmington, except that persons arrested for a violation occurring on any part of the Interstate Highway System may be taken before the nearest available Justice of the Peace from the place of arrest. A person arrested without a warrant outside of the City of Wilmington for a violation of any section of this title, or arrested for any moving traffic violation of any municipal ordinance regulating traffic within its territorial limits as set forth in Chapter 41 of this title, shall have his case heard and determined by the nearest available justice of the peace, notwithstanding the fact that the court of said justice of the peace is situated in a county other than that in which the violation is alleged to have occurred. It shall be a sufficient defense for a person arrested outside of the City of Wilmington to show by one competent witness that there was, at the time of his arrest an available justice of the peace whose regular office was nearer to the place where such person was arrested than the justice of the peace before whom the case is being tried.

(b) For the purpose of this section, a justice of the peace is available when he is at his office, or court.

(c) Notwithstanding any other provisions of this section to the contrary, in those incorporated municipalities which provide duly constituted alderman's courts, said alderman shall continue to hear and adjudicate those cases in which a person is arrested without a warrant and where the alderman's court is the court of initial jurisdiction.

This section shall only apply to those alderman's courts which meet the following standards:

1. All convictions in the alderman's court for moving traffic violations and the disposition of those cases, shall become a matter of record to be filed with the State Motor Vehicle Division on forms to be supplied by the Division. Said record is to be forwarded to the Division no later than ten days after the disposition of the case.

II. The alderman shall be paid by salary only. All fees, fines, costs and other revenue collected by the court in the process of the business of the court shall be promptly forwarded to the municipality from which appointed.

III. The alderman's court shall operate under any uniform rules governing court procedures, accounting systems, and those manuals and guides used to administer the state magisterial system.

Approved July 5 1968.