Restitution Recovery Division
Colbert County Courthouse
201 N. Main Street
Second Floor
Tuscumbia, Alabama 35674
(256) 386-8520

Carol Merritt, Restitution Officer

Just a very few years ago, criminal cases were all about the Defendants and no one else. In the process of a criminal prosecution, the Court was occupied with protecting the rights of the accused and, upon conviction, imposing an appropriate sentence. Restitution might be ordered as part of the Defendant's sentence but usually as part of a creative effort by the Court to rehabilitate the offender. Restitution was not viewed as an inherent part of a criminal judgment. There was no statutory requirement that a Defendant pay restitution despite the loss that the victim may have suffered as the result of a criminal act.

In 1980 the Alabama Legislature passed a law specifically recognizing the right of the victim to be compensated. The act states: "When a Defendant is convicted of a criminal activity or conduct which has resulted in pecuniary damages or loss to a victim, the court shall hold a hearing to determine the amount or type of restitution due the victim or victims of such defendant's criminal acts. …in addition to to any other sentence which it may impose, the court shall order that the defendant make restitution or otherwise compensate such victim for any pecuniary damages"

If you are a victim of a crime in Colbert County, Alabama, and the defendant in your case was court ordered to pay you restitution, and you have not received payments as ordered, please feel free to contact Mrs. Merritt.