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Posted on: December 15, 2016

Judge issues order on matters related to jail lawsuit




Judge John D. Beger has issued rulings regarding the ongoing City-County jail dispute. As a result of these rulings, the lawsuit will move forward. 

Judge Beger ruled Dec. 13 that the majority of the City’s (Plaintiff's) statement of facts exist "without substantial controversy" and need no further adjudication.


Some of the facts deemed to be “without substantial controversy” were particulars related to the 1997 intergovernmental agreement between the City of Springfield and Greene County, which governs access to the consolidated city-county justice center (City-County jail).


This ruling will help the parties limit the scope of future discovery and trial issues. The City’s request for immediate access to the jail was not granted at this stage, which means the suit will continue.



In July 2015 the City of Springfield filed suit Greene County Circuit Court seeking a declaratory judgment on Greene County Sheriff Jim Arnott’s contractual requirement to accept municipal prisoners. Other counts sought injunctive relief, and an order for  specific performance for the Sheriff to accept municipal prisoners while the lawsuit is ongoing.


In 1997, Greene County voters approved a law enforcement sales tax (LEST) to fund several community initiatives, including the City-County Jail. At that time, the City and County entered into a written contract related to housing of the City’s prisoners. That intergovernmental agreement (IGA) determines the use of LEST revenue.


As part of the IGA, the City, County and then-Sheriff agreed that the “Sheriff shall accept all municipal, county or federal prisoners brought to the jail …”

More information

The City’s Website at contains the original petition, a complete chronology of the jail constraint issues, a summary of the impact of the jail closure on the City and community and a backgrounder on the subject. 

Judge's order

Plaintiff's Statement of Facts

Parties Stipulation of Facts

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For more information, contact Cora Scott, Director of Public Information & Civic Engagement, at 417-380-3352 or

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