The Catalina Courthouse (City of Avalon, Los Angeles County) is open and hearing cases again after a months-long COVID closure.
Before the shutdown, the tiny courthouse had been open on alternating Fridays. Due to the backlog of pressing matters, though, the court will temporarily operate on a weekly basis as the staff works to catch up.
It's been a slow summer for tourism on the island as bars were closed, cruises were cancelled and the ferries reduced services. Crowds are finally starting to return as the weather heats up and the tuna make their way into warmer waters.
The surging crowds have brought a surge in misdemeanor arrests and citations over the past couple weeks. After a quiet summer, the Sheriff reports a recent spike in reports of domestic violence, "drunk in public", possession of controlled substances, disturbing the peace, driving under the influence (DUI) and assault / battery.
The City Council of Avalon also recently approved a $100 fine for failure to wear a mask over the mouth and nose in places where individuals are likely to be in close contact with others.
If you've been arrested or cited while visiting Catalina Island, a private attorney (like myself) can make all of your court appearances so that you don't have to. In most cases, you are not required to personally attend each court hearing if you are represented by private counsel. Fighting a misdemeanor charge usually necessitates several appearances and the cost of traveling back and forth to and from the island can be prohibitive for most people. Don't make a series of trips if you don't have to. Let an experienced professional collect the evidence, argue with the prosecutor and negotiate a fair deal on your behalf.
Our office defends more cases on Catalina Island every year than any other private law firm. We know the players and we know how the game is played in Avalon. We have extensive experience defending against all types of charges that commonly arise on the island, from alcohol-related offenses to violent matters and even fishing violations.
If you or a loved one was cited or arrested while visiting Catalina Island, call us for a free attorney consultation. (714) 449-3335. Ask for John.
Thanks for reading.