The mission of the Markham Municipal Court is to impartially adjudicate ordinance violation cases such that legal rights of individuals are safeguarded and public interest is protected.
In order to achieve this mission, the Municipal Court has set forth a number of strategic objectives, and annually develops an action plan. The action plan focuses the court’s actions toward achieving these objectives.
WHAT WE DO – What is a municipal court?
A municipal court is a trial court that deals exclusively with cases involving city ordinance violations. Offenses brought before a municipal court are those that occur within the limits of the municipality. Examples of violations handled in municipal court are: traffic, disorderly conduct, vandalism, loitering, theft, building code, health code, and public drunkenness. Characteristics of a municipal court include the following:
A sentence to pay monetary forfeitures to the City is the primary sentence imposed on a guilty/liable defendant. In addition, a municipal judge/hearing officer may require a defendant’s participation in one of several community service or educational programs. If a defendant does not pay the forfeiture, a judge/hearing officer may suspend the defendant’s driving privileges thru the State or file against the individuals credit report or depending on severity and case seek warrant for arrest.
Municipal court records are public records. This means that with the exception of juvenile cases, the records of all municipal court proceedings are accessible to everyone.
All actions of the municipal court are appealable. Both the defendant and the City Attorney/City Rep. have the right to appeal the decision of the judge. Appeals are heard at the Circuit Court.
What makes the Markham Municipal Court unique?
The Markham Municipal Court, established in 2002 has been a great
addition to the Ordinance enforcement, the Markham Municipal Court handles a reasonable volume of cases, which are filed and adjudicated each year.
In terms of quality of service, the court undertakes innovative steps to make itself understandable to the general public, to reach out to defendants who fear courts, and to vigorously enforce its judgments. It uses interpersonal help and technological systems to guide nervous newcomers through the legal process.
To maintain this level of performance, the Markham Municipal Court has a strategic plan for its mission.
How is the Markham Municipal Court Organized?
There are two branches of the Markham Municipal Court, Code & Traffic. All branches hear the same types of cases, but can have different schedules. The Municipal Court’s two branches hear cases from 9:00 a.m. Saturdays.
The Code Court Administrator Roger A. Agpawa is responsible for establishing policy and guidelines. He does this in consultation with the municipal judge/hearing officer Michelle Broughton Fountain and the Court Clerks Tiara Williams and Toyia Dean.
A dedicated staff assists the court in its duty of administering justice at the municipal level. The Code Court Administrator manages the staff, makes sure that the court has adequate resources, and that court resources are used in accordance with court mission and strategic objectives.
What happens to the money paid as fines?
Revenues generated from the collection of fines are not directly used for the Municipal Court. Instead, this money is placed into the general fund of the City. The general fund is then disbursed by the Mayor and the City Council to City Departments and agencies through the annual budget process.
In addition to determining the guilt or innocence of a defendant, and to imposing fines on the guilty ones, the Municipal Court judges are also interested in encouraging lawful behavior and discouraging repeat violations by the same defendants.
What does the court do to prevent repeat violations?
Judges regularly refer defendants to supervised community service at various non-profit agencies and to various educational programs. Educational programs include those aimed at improving behavior, increasing awareness of the consequences of unlawful behavior, and preventing offenses such as assaultive behavior.
Who We Are
Roger A. Agpawa was appointed Code Court Administrator since the courts inception in 2002 and has worked for the City of Markham since November of 1976.
He has primarily worked for the City’s Fire Department and through many years as well has worked as a City Assistant, handling the affairs of the Mayors Office, running the Ordinance Inspection Bureau, coordinating the 911 Emergency Communications.
Some of his other duties where city-wide phone efforts and computer networking. Currently with some of those responsibilities still in tack he still functions as Deputy Fire Chief for the departments Operations/Emergencies
Tiara Williams also appointed as Court Computer Coordinator /Clerk
Toyia Dean, joined the Court as processing assistant to Clerk also, shortly after the Court started running.
Independent Judge /Hearing Officer
Michelle Broughton-Fountain was appointed Hearing Officer of the Municipal Court, and has worked in Municipal government for many years, with Markham and various other City’s and Departments. She is licensed as a practicing attorney as well as serving as Independent Judge.
Main Information Lines
Court Clerk Tiara (708) 331-4905 ext. 324