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JOSEPHINE SARTAIN v. CITY OF WATER VALLEY

JULY 13, 1988

JOSEPHINE SARTAIN
v.
CITY OF WATER VALLEY, MISSISSIPPI



BEFORE ROY NOBLE LEE, C.J., ROBERTSON & SULLIVAN, JJ.

ROBERTSON, JUSTICE, FOR THE COURT:

I.

Josephine Sartain was convicted in the municipal court of the City of Water Valley, Mississippi, of the misdemeanor of disturbing the peace, whereupon she was sentenced to five months imprisonment and to pay a fine of $483.00. On appeal to the Circuit Court of Yalobusha County, Sartain argued that the charging affidavit was insufficient in law because it did not reflect a prosecution brought in the name of the State of Mississippi nor did it charge an offense against the peace and dignity of the State of Mississippi. The Circuit Court rejected the point and the case has been brought here. In substantial part we affirm.

 II.

 State law declares a misdemeanor offense of" disturbance of the peace, or the peace of others. "Miss. Code Ann., 97-35-15(1) (1972). State law further empowers municipal courts to hear and determine all violations of municipal ordinances and state misdemeanor laws made offenses against municipalities. Miss. Code Ann. 21-23-7(1) (Supp. 1987). The City of Water Valley has authority to declare as offenses against it conduct declared unlawful as misdemeanors under the laws of the state. Miss. Code Ann. 21-13-19 (1972). Pursuant to this latter statute, the Mayor and Board of Aldermen of the City of Water Valley on August 2, 1966, enacted an ordinance with the following effect:

 All offenses which are misdemeanors against the laws of the State of Mississippi are hereby made and declared to be and shall be and constitute offenses against the City of Water Valley, Mississippi, when committed within the corporate limits of said city. Upon conviction . . .; but in no case shall the punishment exceed a fine of $300.00 or imprisonment in jail for more than 90 days, or both such fine and imprisonment.

 All of this was law when Barron Caulfield, Jr., on

 July 28, 1985, appeared before the Mayor of the City of Water Valley and made the following affidavit:

 AFFIDAVIT FOR BENCH WARRANT - CODE SEC. 2260

 THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI City of Water Valley Yalobusha County

 Before me, Hamric Henry, Mayor, City of Water Valley aforesaid in the City of Water Valley, Barron Caulfield, Jr. makes affidavit on information that Mrs. Doyle (Josephine) Sartain on or about the 28th day of July, 1985, did willfully and unlawfully disturb the peace of Barron Caulfield, Jr. on Young Street in the City of Water Valley, Mississippi, by using indecent and offensive language in that she said" God Damn low down Trash "and" Crazy as Hell "," Liars and Whores "," you can't do a damned thing "," God Damn Fools ", and" Son-of-a-Bitch "

 Disturbing the Peace (97-35-15)

 against the lawful ordinances of the City of Water ...


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