Criminal Charge - What happens at my first appearance?
  • If your citation lists any charge that is “criminal” you must personally be present in court on the date and time on your paperwork, or call the court for an alternate date/time to appear in court.  That personal appearance is called an Arraignment
    • At this arraignment, the judge will inform you of the charge against you, advise you of your rights, and asks you how you are going to plead (guilty or not not-guilty) so the events of your case can be placed on the court schedule.
    • If you plead guilty, the court can then inquire into the facts, could accept your plea, and could then sentence on the charges.  
    • Otherwise a not-guilty plea is entered and your case is set for a meeting where you talk to the prosecutor (at a later date/time) to see if you can settle your case without a trial.

Show All Answers

1. I have a citation. What do I do next?
2. When is my court date?
3. What if I can’t appear on my court date?
4. What if I don’t appear?
5. How do I request a hearing to challenge my ticket?
6. What happens at the civil traffic hearing?
7. Can I get the citation dismissed?
8. How much is my fine?
9. What happens if I don’t pay?
10. What if I can’t pay my fine in full?
11. How can I pay my fine?
12. Where can I mail my payment?
13. Payments, and Non-Payment Sanctions
14. I am too busy to go to court. Can I use the MAIL or the INTERNET?
15. What does the law say about my violation?
16. What does this do to my driving record?
17. Can I talk to the judge?
18. If I want to "fight" the ticket, what do I do?
19. Can I attend Defensive Driving School (DDS)?
20. Criminal Charge - What happens at my first appearance?