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Jellico still waiting on ruling from appeals court

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By Charlotte Underwood

After more than a year, the town of Jellico continues to wait on establishing a town court system.

The town court system has been out of commission due to a legal issue between former Jellico Judge Don Moses and the town of Jellico in regards to Moses’ contract.

In January of last year, Moses filed an appeal in the Tennessee Court of Appeals in response to the abolishment of the town court. This left Jellico to play a waiting game.

“As of right now, we are still waiting on the court of appeals and have been since September,” said Vice Mayor Mike Johnson.

Waiting on a decision from the court of appeals is a long and lengthy process.

“From my understanding, they go back and check all similar cases in the state of Tennessee and review them for cross reference before they make a decision,” explained Johnson.

According to Jellico Mayor Forster Baird, the court of appeals has heard the case, but no decision has been passed on.

“They heard the case on Oct. 17, I believe, but we are still waiting on the results,” said Baird.

According to Johnson, the lack of the court system poses a few problems for the police department.

“It does create somewhat of a hardship on being staffed and running our police department because officers have to travel to Jacksboro for court,” said Johnson.

“I feel myself personally that the council could go ahead and act temporarily without the ruling of the appellate court, but others do not feel this way,” explained Johnson.

At attorney’s advice, the council has refrained from temporarily enacting a court system.

“We didn’t want to act on it while it was still in litigation,” explained Baird.