Teen Court is an alternate way for teens, up to age 17, to defer their minor traffic citations from their driving record. Teen Court operates in all of the Grant County Municipal and Magistrate Courts, but is housed at Silver City Municipal Court in Historic Downtown Silver City. When teens get a traffic citation the Judge will gives them an option, if they plead guilty, to participate in Teen Court as an alternative sentencing. If the teen and their parent/guardian agree to the offenses, then they will sign a document stating they will participate in Teen Court.
An example of a sentence would be that the Judge would assign community service hours to the teen, although not all Judges assign community service hours. Secondly, the Judge would also assign the teen to go to the Teen Court Defensive Driving Course through Pro Force Academy. The Defensive Driving Course is held at Pro Force Academy, 4008 Highway 90 S. Silver City, NM 88061. The classes are held on the third Saturday of every month with the exception of holidays. The course is 6 hours long and covers a wide range of dangers behind the wheel, and teaches teens to be more aware of the dangers and how to be a more cautious and effective driver. The Judge would also require that the teen pay the court costs, which would vary depending on the number of citations. Since all Judges are different, some may ask that the teen write an essay pertaining to the traffic offense that the defendant committed.
After the teen goes before the Judge, the Teen Court Clerk will then contact the defendant and his or her parent/guardian to come to her office to complete additional paperwork for tracking purposes. After the defendant has completed the Defensive Driving Course, the Teen Court Clerk will send a letter of completion to the defendant and to the corresponding Court. The traffic offenses will then be deferred and will not appear on the defendants driving record. Teens can only come through Teen Court once in a twelve month period until they turn 18. In some cases Judges may waive that rule and allow the teen to participate in Teen Court once again before the twelve month period is up. This decision may vary with the different Judges in Grant County. If you have any questions, you may contact the Teen Court Clerk.
Tristan M. Hoover
Teen Court Clerk
215 N. Bullard St.
Silver City, NM 88061
(575) 956-1205 Direct Line
(575) 388-0465 Fax