§721. Commissioner for the Twenty-Second Judicial District Court
A. There is hereby created one office of commissioner for the Twenty-Second Judicial District Court.
B. The commissioner shall be selected by a majority of the judges of the Twenty-Second Judicial District and may be removed from office by a majority of those judges. There shall be no term of such office. A commissioner shall serve at the pleasure of the court. Additionally, the commissioner may be subject to removal from office for any reason for which a district judge may be removed.
C. The commissioner shall have jurisdiction over criminal matters.
D. The provisions of this Section shall not affect or limit the jurisdiction of a district judge as provided by law.
E.(1) Subject to the other provisions of this Subsection, the commissioner shall have all of the powers as are enumerated below. The powers of the commissioner shall not be inconsistent with the constitution and laws of this state, the constitution and laws of the United States, or the rules of the Twenty-Second Judicial District Court. The commissioner shall perform such duties as are assigned by the Twenty-Second Judicial District Court, in accordance with the rules which shall be prescribed by the elected judges of the court.
(2) The powers of the commissioner when hearing criminal matters may include but shall not be limited to the power to:
(a) Administer oaths and affirmations.
(b) Take acknowledgments, affidavits, and depositions.
(c) Act on felony charges through arraignment; however, the commissioner shall not accept pleas of guilty on or sign orders disposing of felony charges.
(d) Hear preliminary motions prior to filing the bill of information or indictment and make recommendations to the district judge.
(e) Act on misdemeanor charges including accepting pleas in misdemeanor cases preliminary to trial on the merits and conduct evidentiary hearings of misdemeanor cases. A trial on the merits in a misdemeanor case shall be tried by the commissioner only upon the written consent of the defendant and the expressed waiver of the defendant's right to have his case heard by a district court judge.
(f) Fix bail.
(g) Review probable cause affidavits within forty-eight hours of warrantless arrests.
(h) Conduct seventy-two hour hearings.
(i) Sign waivers of extradition only upon the written consent of the defendant and the expressed waiver of the defendant's right to have his extradition heard by a district court.
(j) Supervise defendants sentenced under the provisions of the drug court in accordance with the policies set down by the judges of the Twenty-Second Judicial District Court.
(k) Supervise all conditions of bail bonds.
(l) Supervise special conditions of protective orders, domestic violence, and any other probation conditions.
F.(1) When a misdemeanor case, with the written consent of the defendant and the expressed waiver of the defendant's right to have his case heard by a district court judge, is referred to the commissioner by rule of court or assigned to the commissioner by a judge of the Twenty-Second Judicial District Court, the commissioner shall receive all evidence and prepare a written report of his findings which shall contain the following elements:
(a) A statement of the pleadings.
(b) A statement of the facts as found by the commissioner.
(c) An opinion based on the pleadings and facts.
(d) A judgment as he determines should be rendered with the recommendation to the judge that it be made the judgment of the court.
(2) In such a case, the commissioner shall file a report containing proposed findings and recommendations with the court, and a copy shall be promptly provided to all parties or their counsel of record either at the hearing or by mail.
(3) Any party, within ten days after filing the report, may traverse such findings or recommendations in writing in such manner as shall be specified by the rules of the district court.
(4) If exceptions to the report are timely filed within ten days, the judge may set the exceptions for hearing within thirty days, may hear argument on the exceptions and decide the exceptions on the record and evidence previously made before the commissioner.
(5) The judge may accept, reject, or modify in whole or in part the findings or recommendations made by the commissioner and also may receive further evidence or recommit the matter to the commissioner with instructions or may hear the case de novo and enter judgment.
Acts 2002, 1st Ex. Sess., No. 28, §1, eff. Aug. 16, 2002.