Traffic summonses are issued by a Woodland Park Police Officer. The copy the officer provides you should be a pink 8½ x 11 sheet.
In the middle of the summons is the section and title of the code with which you have been charged as violating. If you wish to read that law, you may review the Code adopted by of the City of Woodland Park at Model Traffic Code.
Most traffic violations carry a payable fine amount. This is a fine established by the Court that may be paid by someone who wishes to pay his or her ticket before the court date rather than appear in Court. If your violation is payable, the Officer will have circled or written in a fine amount and checked the box marked Payable Summons.
If you choose to pay the fine amount shown on your ticket, the payment constitutes a guilty plea to the charge and the points associated with that charge will be reported to the Colorado Department of Revenue – Motor Vehicle Division. If your driver’s license has been issued by another state and that state has a reciprocal agreement with Colorado, they will also receive notification of the penalty points. Accrual of too many penalty points results in the loss of the driver’s license. If the Officer circled or wrote “Court”, “Sum” or “Summons” where the fine amount should be, you have been directed to appear on your designated court date and time.
Certain violations carry a MANDATORY minimum fine established by City Council that cannot be reduced or suspended. Even though the points may be reduced on the original charge through a plea agreement with the City Prosecutor, the fine cannot be changed by the Court.
Current examples of violations that carry a MANDATORY minimum fine include: stop sign violations, red lights, speeding, and driving without insurance.
Payments may be made in person by cash, check, money order, VISA or Mastercard. To pay from home by credit card, call 687-5207. Send mail payments to Municipal Court, P.O. Box 9007, Woodland Park, Colorado, 80866-9007.
The Court Appearance
The first time one appears in this Court they will be required to watch a taped advisement of their rights in the Court. The Judge will then call the docket – Adult cases will be called first, followed by Juveniles (juveniles must appear with a parent or guardian). When your name is called you will be required to step forward to a podium to answer to the charges against you. If you enter a plea of not guilty, you will be offered an opportunity to speak with a prosecuting attorney to discuss the matter. If a negotiated sentence in return for a plea of guilty is made by the City Attorney, you are not required to accept it and your matter will then be set for Trial.
If you exercise your right to stand Trial and require the government to prove the allegations beyond a reasonable doubt, the Court will schedule the Trial at a mutually agreeable later date.
One may enter a plea of not guilty and ask for a Trial even if they think they might have committed the offense charged. The words ‘not guilty’ are legalese for saying”I want to exercise my constitutional rights and require the government to prove the charge beyond a reasonable doubt”.
Those who have been charged with failure to provide proof of compulsory insurance should bring proof of insurance with them to Court. A timely letter from the insurance agent is the best proof of insurance.
Rescheduling Court Appearances
Those who opt not to pay the summons and yet cannot appear in Court on the date indicated must appear in person at the Violations Bureau (City Hall – 220 W. South Avenue) before the appearance date to obtain a new appearance date.
Court scheduling is not typically handled by telephone because the law requires the Court to maintain a signed promise to appear for all individual Court appearances. When one signs their traffic summons in front of the Police Officer, they have filed such a promise with the Court. By law, any change must also be in writing.
Failure to either timely pay a traffic summons in full or appear in Court when scheduled will result in the issuance of a warrant for one’s arrest.
For further information, contact the Court at (719) 687-5207.