« PreviousContinue »
its county. 2. To try and determine all indictments found therein, for all public offenses, except murder, manslaughter and arson. 3. To hear and determine appeals from justices, mayors' and recorders' courts, in cases of a criminal nature. (1)
Art. 665, Sec. 53. When an indictment is found in the court of sessions for murder, manslaughter, or arson, it shall be transmitted by the clerk to the district court sitting in the county, for trial ; except when the indictment is found against a person holding the office of a district judge, when it shall be transmitted to the district court of such other district as the court of sessions may direct.—[Am. April 13, 1854; R. S. St. 1853, 295; St. 1851, 19; St. 1850, 210; C. L. 746.
Art. 666, Sec. 54. Indictments found in the court of sessions shall be transmitted to the district court sitting in the county, for trial, in the following cases: 1. Whenever a judge or justice of the court of sessions is by law disqualified from hearing or trying the same. 2. Indictments found against a member of the court of sessions, or any justice of the peace of the county.
ART. 667, Sec. 55. The court of sessions, except in the counties in which a board of supervisors is established, shall also have power and jurisdiction in its county : 1. To make orders respecting the property of the county, in conformity with any law of this state, and to take care of and preserve such property. 2. To examine, settle and allow all accounts legally chargeable against the county, and to direct the levying such per centage on the assessed value of real and personal property in the county as may be authorized by law. 3. To examine and audit the accounts of all officers having the care, management, collection and disbursement of any money belonging to the county or appropriated by law, or otherwise, for its use and benefit. 4. To control and manage public roads, turnpikes, ferries, canals and bridges within the county, where the law does not prohibit such jurisdiction, and to make such orders as may be necessary and requisite to carry its control and management into effect. 5. To divide the county into townships, and to create new townships and to change the divisions of the same, as the convenience of the county may require. 6. To establish and change election precincts. 7. To control and manage the property, real and personal, belonging to the county, and to receive by donation any property for the use and benefit of the county. 8. To purchase any real and personal property necessary for the use of the county; provided, the value of such real property be previously estimated by three disinterested persons, to be appointed for that purpose by the district court of the county. 9. To sell and cause to be conveyed any property belonging to the county, appropriating the proceeds of such sale to the use of the same. 10. To cause to be erected and furnished a court-house, jail, and such other public buildings as may be necessary, and the same to be kept in repair; provided, that the erection of such court-house, jail, and other public buildings, be let out, after one month's previous publication, in each case, of a readiness to receive proposals therefor, to the lowest bidder, who will give good and sufficient security for the completion of any contract which may be made respecting the same. 11. To ascertain and determine with a jury, or by consent of parties, without a jury, the just compensation to be made to the owners of private property taken for public use. 12. To do and perform all such other acts and things as may be requisite and necessary to the full discharge of the powers and jurisdiction conferred on the court. (2)
Art. 668, Sec. 56. When any bay, river, stream, creek or slough separate two counties, the court of sessions (3) of the county lying on the left bank descending such bay, river, stream, creek or slough, shall have the jurisdiction of the same, so far as the control and management of bridges and ferries are concerned, but
(1) Phelan v. San Francisco, Oct. T. 1856; People v. Ah Chung, 5 Cal. 103. (2) The constitution has confined the jurisdiction of the court of sessions to criminal business solely. Bur. goyne v. Supervisors of San Francisco, 5 Cal. 9.
(3) See Supervisors.
all sums paid for licenses to construct any bridges, or to run any ferries over such river, stream, creek, or slough shall be divided equally between the two counties.
Art. 669, Sec. 57. All accounts, vouchers, papers, petitions and documents relating to the business or property of the county, shall be appropriately arranged under their several heads, filed in the office of the county clerk, and preserved separate from the papers and documents of the court, as a court having criminal jurisdiction.
Sec. 58. The orders, judgments and proceedings of the court when sitting for the transaction of county business shall be entered by the clerk, in separate books to be kept for that purpose.
Art. 670, Sec. 59. À term of the court of sessions shall be held at the county seat in each county on the first Monday of February, April, June, August, October and December of each year, excepting the county of Calaveras, where the terms of said court shall be held on the second Mondays of January, March, May, July, September and November, and excepting also the county of Placer, where the terms of said court shall be held on the second Monday of February, May, August and November in each year, and shall continue until the commencement of the next term, unless all the business of the court be sooner disposed of. Special terms of the court may also be held whenever, in the opinion of the county judge, the public interests require the same.--[Am. March 20, 1854; R. S. St. 1853, 296 ; St. 1851, 73; St. 1850, 211; C. L. 748; Am. May 11, 1855.
Art. 671, Sec. 60. Until a court-house be erected for the county, this court may direct the sheriff to furnish a suitable room for holding the court, and the expenses thereof shall be a county charge. This court may, also, at any time, direct the sheriff to furnish attendants, fuel, lights and stationery suitable and sufficient for the transaction of business, and the expenses thereof shall be a county charge.
VI. THE PROBATE COURT.
Art. 672, Sec. 61. There shall be in each county, a probate court with the jurisdiction conferred by this chapter.(1)
Art. 673, Sec. 62. The county judge of each county shall be the judge of the probate court.
Art. 674, Sec. 63. The probate court shall have power to open and receive the proof of last wills and testaments, and to admit them to probate ; to grant letters testamentary, of administration and of guardianship, and to revoke the same, for cause shown according to law; to compel executors, administrators and guardians to render an account when required, or at the period fixed by law; to order the sale of property of estates or belonging to minors ; to order the payment of debts due by estates; to order and regulate all partitions of property or estate of deceased persons; to compel the attendance of witnesses ; to appoint appraisers or arbitrators; to compel the production of title deeds, papers or other property of an estate or of a minor; and to make such other orders, as may be necessary and proper, in the exercise of the jurisdiction conferred upon the probate court.
Art. 675, Sec. 64. The county judge shall have power in vacation to appoint appraisers, to receive inventories and accounts to be filed in his court; to suspend the powers of executors, administrators, or guardians in the cases allowed by law; to grant special letters of administration or guardianship; to approve claims and bonds, and to direct the issuance, from this court, of all writs and process necéssary in the exercise of his powers as probate judge.
Art. 676, Sec. 65. The county judge of the county of San Francisco shall hold a probate court at the city of San Francisco, on the third Monday of January, March, May, July, September and November; provided, that each term of said court shall continue until the commencement of the next term, unless all the business of the court be sooner disposed of. In the other counties of the state, the county judge shall hold a probate court on the fourth Monday of each month.
(1) Arts. 672—682.
VII.—JUSTICES' COURTS.(1) ART. 677, Sec. 66. The courts held by justices of the peace in this state shall be denominated justices' courts, and shall have the jurisdiction conferred by this chapter, but nothing contained in this chapter shall affect their jurisdiction in actions or proceedings now pending therein, nor shall it affect any judgment or order already made, or proceedings already taken.
ART. 678, Sec. 67. Justices' courts shall have jurisdiction of the following actions and proceedings: 1. Of an action arising on contracts for the recovery of money only, if the sum claimed, exclusive of interest, does not exceed two hundred dollars. 2. Of an action for damages for injury to the person, or for taking or detaining personal property, or for injuring real or personal property, if the damages claimed do not exceed two hundred dollars. 3. Of an action for a fine, penalty or forfeiture, not exceeding two hundred dollars, given by statute or the ordinance of an incorporated city. 4. Of an action upon a bond conditioned for the payment of money not exceeding two hundred dollars, though the penalty exceed that sum, the judgment to be given for the sum actually due ; when the payments are to be made by installments, an action may be brought for each installment as it becomes due. 5. Of an action upon a surety bond or undertaking taken by them, though the penalty exceed, if the amount claimed does not exceed two hundred dollars. 6. Of an action for the foreclosure of any mortgage, or the enforcement of any lien on real or personal property, when the debt secured does not exceed, exclusive of interest, two hundred dollars. 7. Of an action to recover the possession of personal property when the value of such property does not exceed two hundred dollars. 8. To take and enter judgment on the confession of a defendant when the amount confessed does not exceed two hundred dollars. 9. Of an action for a forcible or unlawful entry upon, or a forcible or unlawful detention of, lands, tenements or other possession. 10. Of an action to determine the right to a mining claim, and for damages for injury to the same, when the damages claimed do not exceed two hundred dollars.' 11. Of proceedings respecting vagrants and disorderly persons.--[Am. April 19, 1856 ; R. S. St. 1853, 298 ; St. 1851, 23 ; St. 1850, 179; C. L. 750.
ART. 679, Sec. 68. The jurisdiction conferred by the last section shall not extend, however: 1. To a civil action in which the title to real property shall come in question. 2. Nor to an action or proceeding against ships, vessels or boats, or against the owners or masters thereof, when the suit or proceeding is for the recovery of seamen's wages for a voyage performed in whole or in part without the waters of this state.—[Am. April 19, 1856 ; R. S. St. 1853, 298; St. 1851, 23; St. 1850, 179; C. L. 750.
ART. 680, Sec. 69. These courts shall also have jurisdiction, except within the limits of the city of San Francisco, of the following public offenses committed within the respective counties in which such courts are established : 1. Petit larceny. 2. Assault and battery, not charged to have been committed upon a public officer in the discharge of his duties, or with intent to kill. 3. Breaches of the peace, riots, affrays, committing a willful injury to property; and all misdemeanors, punishable by fine, not exceeding five hundred dollars, or imprisonment not exceeding six months, or by both such fine and imprisonment.--[Am. May 7, 1855; R. S. St. 1853, 298; St. 1851, 23; St. 1850, 179; C. L. 750.
Art. 681, Sec. 70. There shall be no terms in justices' courts; these courts shall always be open.
Art. 682, Sec. 71. Justices of the peace shall hold their offices for one year, and until their successors are elected and qualified. They shall be chosen by the electors of their respective townships or cities at the general election in the year one thousand eight hundred and fifty-three, and at the general election every year thereafter, and shall enter upon their duties on the first Monday of the month
(1) Zander v. Coe, 5 Cal. 230.
subsequent to their election. Whenever a vacancy shall occur in the office of a justice, by death, resignation or otherwise, a special election may be ordered by the county judge to supply such vacancy. The justice elected to supply a vacancy shall hold his office only for the unexpired term of his immediate predecessor. Each justice, before entering upon the discharge of his duties, shall take the constitutional oath of office, and shall execute a bond to the state in the sum of five thousand dollars, conditioned for the faithful performance of his duties, and file the same with the county clerk.
VIII.—RECORDER'S COURT, Art. 683, Sec. 72. The recorders' courts which are already established, or which may hereafter be established, in any incorporated city of this state, shall have jurisdiction : 1. Of an action or proceeding for the violation of any ordinance of their respective cities. 2. Of an action or proceeding to prevent or abate a nuisance within the limits of their respective cities. 3. Of proceedings respecting vagrants and disorderly persons.
Art. 684, Sec. 73. The recorders' courts already established, or which may hereafter be established, shall also have jurisdiction of the following public offenses committed in their respective cities : 1. Petit larceny. 2. Assault and battery, not charged to have been committed upon a public officer, in the execution of his duties, or with intent to kill. 3. Breaches of the peace, riots, affrays, committing a willful injury to property and all misdemeanors punishable by fine not exceeding five hundred dollars, or imprisonment not exceeding three months, or by both such fine and imprisonment.
Art. 685, Sec. 74. A recorder's court shall be 'held by a judge, who shall be designated as the “ Recorder of the City;" and said court shall be held at such place in the city within which it is established, as the government of such city may by ordinance direct.
Art. 686, Sec. 75. The recorders shall be chosen by the electors of their respective cities, on a day to be fixed by the government of such cities, and shall hold their offices for one year, unless a longer period be fixed in the acts incorporating such cities, in which case, for such period fixed. Before entering upon their duties they shall take the constitutional oath of office.
Art. 687, Sec. 76. The recorders shall receive a compensation to be fixed by the charter, or when not so fixed, by the government of their respective cities, to be paid by such cities quarterly, in equal proportions. Such compensations shall not be increased or diminished during the period for which they are elected.
Art. 688, Sec. 77. The recorders shall possess the powers and exercise the duties of committing magistrates, in the criminal cases in which the courts held by them have no jurisdiction by this act; and as such magistrates, they may examine, commit or discharge, all persons brought before them, as the justice of the case may require.
Art. 689, Sec. 78. Recorders and recorders' courts may issue all process, writs and warrants, and may make any and all orders necessary and proper to the complete exercise of their powers,
Art. 690, Sec. 79. There shall be no terms in recorders' courts. These courts shall always be open.
IX.—MAYORS' COURTS. Art. 691, Sec. 80. The mayors' courts which are already established, or which may hereafter be established in any incorporated city of this state, shall have the same jurisdiction of actions and of public offenses committed in their respective cities which is conferred by this act upon
recorders' courts.. Art. 692, Sec. 81. The mayors of incorporated cities, when authorized by law to hold a court in their respective cities, shall possess the same powers as committing magistrates, as are conferred by this act upon recorders of cities.
ART. 693, Sec. 82. They mayors' courts, and the mayors as the judges of such courts, may issue all process, writs and warrants, and may make any and all orders necessary and proper to the complete exercise of their powers.
ART. 694, Sec. 83. The supreme court, the several district courts, the superior court of the city of San Francisco, the several county courts, the several courts of sessions and the several probate courts of this state shall be courts of record.
Art. 695, Sec. 84. The sittings of every court of justice shall be public, except as is provided in the next section.
ART. 696, Sec. 85. In an action for divorce, the court may direct the trial of any issue of fact joined therein to be private; and upon such directions all persons may be excluded except the officers of the court, the parties, their witnesses and counsel.
Art. 697, Sec. 86. Every court shall have power: 1. To preserve and enforce order in its immediate presence. 2. To enforce order in the proceedings before it, or before a person or persons empowered to conduct a judicial investigation under its authority. 3. To compel obedience to its lawful judgments, orders and process, and to the lawful orders of its judge out of court in an action or proceeding pending therein. 4. To control in furtherance of justice the conduct of its ministerial officers.
XI.—PARTICULAR DISQUALIFICATION OF JUDGES. Art. 698, Sec. 87. A judge shall not act as such in any of the following cases : 1. In an action or proceeding to which he is a party, or in which he is interested. 2. When he is related to either party by consanguinity or affinity, within the third degree. 3. When he has been attorney or counsel for either party in the action or proceeding; but this section shall not apply to the arrangement of the calendar or the regulation of the order of business.
Art. 699, Sec. 88. A judge shall not act as attorney or counsel in a court in which he is judge, or in an action or proceeding removed therefrom to another court for review, or in any action or proceeding from which an appeal may lie to his own court.
ART. 700, Sec. 89. A judge of the supreme court, or of the district court, or of the superior court of the city of San Francisco, shall not act as attorney or counsel in any court except in an action or proceeding to which he is a party on the record.
Art. 701, Sec. 90. A judge or justice of the peace shall not have a partner acting as attorney or counsel in any court in this state.
Art. 702, Sec. 91. A judge of the supreme court, or of the district court, or of the superior court of the city of San Francisco, or of a county court, shall not absent himself from the state.
XII.-JUDICIAL DAYS AND PLACES OF HOLDING COURTS. Art. 703, Sec. 92. The courts of justice may be held and judicial business may be transacted on any day except as provided in the next section.
ART. 704, Sec. 93. No court shall be opened nor shall any judicial business be transacted on Sunday, on New Year's Day, on the Fourth of July, on Christmas Day, on Thanksgiving Day, or on a day in which the general election is held, except for the following purposes: 1. To give, upon their request, instructions to a jury then deliberating on their verdict. 2. To receive a verdict, or discharge a jury. 3. For the exercise of the powers of a magistrate in a criminal action, or in a proceeding of a criminal nature.
Art. 705, Sec. 94. Every court of justice except a justice's, mayor's, or recorder's court, shall sit at the county seat of the county in which it is held, except in