FRIARS POINT — Municipal court is back in Friars Point and Chris Finn was introduced as the town judge during Tuesday’s city council meeting.
Finn briefly talked about his goals and conversations he had with police chief Neal Mitchell.
“I’m glad to be here,” Finn said. “Hopefully, we can get a functioning court going. I’ve had some discussions with Chief Mitchell about operating things and how they would operate to keep the town’s cost down in regard to such things as jail fees as far as transportation back and forth and dealing with the County and keeping Friars Point’s business taken care of out here so you don’t have as much back and forth to town to justice court in Clarksdale. It would be a great help to the town to have a good functioning court system here.”
City attorney Cheryl Webster was unanimously approved as the prosecuting attorney for $200 a month.
“That’s saving us, too,” said mayor James Washington discussing what he believes was a low cost for a prosecuting attorney.
“That way we could keep all our business in house. When a person gets in trouble, it will be handled here.”
The council also approved hiring two part-time police officers through the remainder of the current fiscal year. The 2020-21 fiscal year begins Oct. 1.
Mitchell is the police chief, while Fernando Bee and Harvell McDonald are the other two officers.
Mitchell said he would offer Christopher Osborne one of the part-time positions. Osborne was an officer in Friars Point until his position was cut.
Mitchell said he does not know which officer he will offer the other part-time position.
Keeping the new officers will be readdressed at the beginning of the new fiscal year next month.
Washington’s wife, Zenolia Hayes Washington, died last week. She served 20-plus years at Coahoma Community College working in the Upward Bound program, the English department and as an accountant in the financial aid department.
Washington thanked those who called him and extended their sympathies.
“I just want to thank the community club and people of Friars Point during the time of my family’s bereaving,” Washington said. “You all were there for me and I want you to know that I personally appreciate everything you all have done.”
Washington said one of the last things he and his wife talked about was that someone told her he would not be running for reelection.
“She said don’t let nobody talk you into not running,” Washington said. “God put you there. So I’m going to let everybody here know that I’m going to seek the mayor another term.”
The next mayor’s election in Friars Point will be in 2021 with the new term beginning in July.