Study finds affluence factor in municipal court satisfaction
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A new study suggests that a community's affluence plays a role in determining a person's municipal court experience.
Saint Louis University conducted an exit poll of 753 people leaving courts in 13 St. Louis County municipalities. Results were released Tuesday.
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that the poll found that both black and white residents had a far better experience in communities where the median income level was higher. However, black defendants generally had a worse experience than whites.
Municipal courts in the region have been under scrutiny since the unrest that followed the 2014 police shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson. A U.S. Department of Justice report was critical of Ferguson's municipal court for making money largely on the backs of poor and black residents.