The General Sessions Music City Community Court, Division VIII (8) was founded by Judge Rachel L. Bell in 2012. Since its inception, the court has piloted several community initiatives focused on preventive and diversionary justice focused on the concept, that “Justice does not stop at the courthouse steps” and charged to do all it can to help break the playground to prison pipeline and restore/ rehabilitate lives.
Music City Community Court
408 2nd Ave. North, Suite 4130
Nashville, TN 37219
Dedicated Space for programming:
Bordeaux North Community Justice Center
2013 25th Ave. North, Room 23
Nashville, TN 37208
DIVERSIONARY JUSTICE (to rehabilitate and restore offenders)
Judge Bell in partnership with the Metropolitan Sheriff’s office speaks to inmates in the women and men pods at the Correctional Development Center (CDC) during the Healing Journeys and New Avenues classes providing uplifting messages focused on putting mistakes behind you and starting a new life with a new mindset upon re-entry back into society.
Saturday Dockets were created by Judge Bell to provide access to justice right on the spot every 4-6 weeks in various locations around Nashville, Davidson County.
The Community Service Work projects provide access to justice so that after offenders are complete with the work, they are given credit immediately and do not have to come back to court on a return docket to show proof of compliance with an agreed order of guilty under-advisement plea.
The Expungement Clinic and Indigency Dockets assist offenders with the ability to file a motion on the spot to be heard by the court. If declared indigent court costs and fines are waived providing the ability to proceed with filing out expungement applications to clear a criminal record of cases that were dismissed with or without cost.
PREVENTIVE JUSTICE (to break down the playground to prison pipeline)
6 week summer literacy program offered to MNPS rising 1st-4th graders.
Internships offered to MNPS for rising 5th-12th graders during school break internships (fall and spring breaks 11th-12th graders, summer breaks 5th-12th graders)
Offered to MNPS 12th grade students to discuss road rules and the reality of being involved in the court system. The students learn about the wide range of sentences that can be imposed for traffic infractions, careless behaviors, and the civil liability of at-fault auto crashes.
* In 2016, Judge Bell was trained and certified to teach driver safety training programs.
GENERAL SESSIONS MUSIC CITY COMMUNITY PARTNERS
G.S. Probation Department
G.S. Traffic School Education Department
G.S. Division VIII, Staff
Criminal Court Clerk's Office
District Attorney's Office
TN Bar Association - YLD Division
Attorney Amber Floyd, Pro Bono Attorney Volunteer Coordinator
Metropolitan Nashville Beautification Commission
Metropolitan Nashville Police Department, North Precint
Metropolitan Nashville Sherriff's Office
Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools
TN Faith and Justice Alliance, a project of the TN Supreme Court Access to Justice Commission
Napier Looby Bar Association
Lawyers Association for Women, Diversity Committee