62-B District Court for the City of Kentwood
We at the court are proud and excited
to have served our community
the City of Kentwood for the past 50 years.
Let’s take a look back in time. When Kentwood became a city in 1967, we had a Justice of the Peace Court. Ray Blett was the Justice of the Peace.
- In 1968, the state abolished the Justice of the Peace Courts and created the District Courts. The legislation provided for two district judges in the 62nd District Court to serve Kentwood, Wyoming, Grandville, and Walker. Wyoming decided to keep its Municipal Court and so Kentwood created a Municipal Court in 1969. The first Municipal Court Judge was Judge Thomas Van Hattum who replaced the current Justice of the Peace, Marie DeVries. When he resigned, Judge William Addison became the Municipal Judge. When he resigned in 1970, the Kentwood City Commission then appointed Judge Joseph F. Kelly on January 13, 1971.
- In 1978, the legislature passed a new statute dividing the 62nd District Court that had been originally proposed. In this legislation, Kentwood would have its own judge. William G. Kelly was elected in November 1978 and the 62B District Court started on January 1, 1979. Judge William G. Kelly has served since. Marie DeVries, the former Justice of the Peace, served as the court administrator throughout the Municipal Court years and until 1980. Terry L. Dingman, Deborah Clanton, and Michele White have also served as the court administrators.
- In 1967 and 1968, the Justice of the Peace court and the Municipal Court were housed on South Division. In 1969 the Municipal Court moved to 200 44th St SE with the other city offices. In about 1970, the court moved to 1723 44th St SE. In the third week of January 1979, the District Court moved to 4900 Breton Road. In August 2002, the District Court moved to the Kentwood Justice Center at 4740 Walma, pictured below.