Yavapai County Criminal Court

Yavapai County Criminal Court handles all criminal cases that are filed in Yavapai County. See below for more information about criminal cases in Yavapai County.

Right to an attorney

The US Constitution’s Sixth Amendment ensures the right to an attorney regardless of whether or not you can afford one. In Yavapai County a public defender will be appointed by the judge if you cannot afford private representation.

Right to Jury Trial

For “Serious Crimes”, those that can have a potential penalty of 6 months in jail OR a minimum $500 penalty, the US Constitution guarantees a right to trial by jury. This is guaranteed by Article III of the Constitution and the 6th Amendment. The accused has the ability to waive their right to trial by jury.

Yavapai County Criminal Court

Yavapai County Criminal Court

Defendant Sentencing

At a sentence hearing the judge will inform the defendant of the sentence that will be imposed. This sometimes occurs at the same hearing in which the defendant is found guilty (either by trial or plea agreement). In can also occur at a later date, most often this is due to the complexity of the case where more time is needed to determine the appropriate sentence.

Yavapai County Prosecutor

For criminal cases in Yavapai County, the prosecutor will be a representative of Yavapai County. The Yavapai County prosecutor reviews all evidence and ultimately decides whether to file or dismiss charges in the case. Most of the time, the prosecutor has leeway in plea negotiations and determines how the case will be prosecuted.

Plea Agreements

A Plea Agreement, sometimes known as a Plea Bargain is an agreement between the prosecution and the defendant, where the defendant pleads guilty or no contest often in exchange for a lesser charge or lighter recommended sentence. A large majority of criminal cases end in a plea agreement. In Yavapai County you can inform your attorney to negotiate with the prosecution to attempt to come to a plea agreement, but this is dependent upon the charge severity and also the prosecutors willingness to accept a plea deal.

Yavapai County Arraignments

An arraignment is a court hearing. In Yavapai County this is the first thing that will happen in a criminal case. The defendant will be brought before a judge in Yavapai County Criminal Court and the judge will read the charges that were filed against the defendant. The judge will also read the rights the defendant has and ask the defendant if they understand both the charges filed against them and their rights as a defendant in the case. In Yavapai County a plea of Guilty, Not Guilty or No Contest may be entered. In a guilty or no contest plea the sentencing of the defendant may take place at the same arraignment hearing or a later date may be scheduled for sentencing. For a not guilty plea, a date will be set for a trial.

Mandatory Appearances in Yavapai County Criminal Court

At a mandatory or required court appearance in Yavapai County, the defendant must appear before the court. In the event of a “Failure to Appear” the judge may issue a warrant for the arrest of the defendant. Note: not all criminal hearings are mandatory, in a non-mandatory hearing an attorney may appear on your behalf without you being in court.

Where will Yavapai County criminal case hearings take place?

Criminal cases will take place at the criminal courts of Yavapai County. See here for the location of the criminal courts in Yavapai County.

What is Jury Deliberation?

After both the prosecution and defense have presented their cases, the judge in the case will provide instructions to the jury about what they must decide. The jury will be dismissed to the jury room where they will deliberate about the guilt or innocence of the defendant. After reaching a unaminous decision, they return their decision to the court where it is read aloud in the courtroom. If the jury is unable to reach a unaminous decision, the jury is deadlocked, also known as a hung jury, in which a mistrial will be declared.

Burden of Proof

The burden of proof is always on the prosecution in a criminal trial. In other words, the prosecution has to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant committed the crime. The defense must only prove that there is a reasonable possibility that the defendant did NOT commit the crime. If the prosecution cannot prove that the defendant committed the crime beyond a reasonable doubt, the jury will be instructed to find the defendant not-guilty.

Appealing a Criminal Conviciton

A defendant may appeal a criminal conviction to an appellate court. In an appeal, the actual trial is not redone, but the appellate court hears arguments that the criminal case was not handled in a legal manner at the original criminal court. The appellate court can either uphold the conviction, or determine that errors were made and may request a retrial, a resentencing of the defendant or that the charges be dismissed.

I need help for my Yavapai County criminal case

The best place to get information about your criminal case is from an attorney. If you cannot afford an attorney, the court will appoint one to represent you which will assist in your case. For general information about your case the Yavapai County court clerk is able to provide general information about your specific case (e.g. date/time hearings, mandatory appearance, what will take place and what you will be required to do). The court clerk for Yavapai County will NOT be able to provide legal advice for your case, only an attorney can provide legal advice. The court clerk can provide legal information (like the information found on this website) about your case but cannot provide advice about what you should do in your legal manner.

Yavapai County Criminal Court Locations

  • Yavapai County Superior Court – Camp Verde

    Address: 2840 North Commonwealth Drive, Camp Verde AZ 86322
    Phone: 928-567-7741 Fax: 928-567-7720

  • Yavapai County Superior Court – Prescott

    Address: 120 South Cortez Street, Prescott AZ 86303
    Phone: 928-771-3312 Fax: 928-771-3389

  • Bagdad Justice Court

    Address: 100 Main Street, Bagdad AZ 86321
    Phone: 928-633-2141 Fax: 928-633-4451

  • Mayer Justice Court

    Address: 12840 Central Avenue, PO Box 245, Mayer AZ 86333
    Phone: 928-771-3355

  • Prescott Consolidated Justice/City Court

    Address: 120 South Cortez Street, Prescott AZ 86303
    Phone: 928-771-3300 Fax: 928-771-3302

  • Seligman Justice Court

    Address: 54150 Floyd Street, PO Box 56, Seligman AZ 86337
    Phone: 928-422-3281 Fax: 928-422-5982

  • Verde Valley Justice Court

    Address: 10 South 6th Street, Cottonwood AZ 86326
    Phone: 928-639-5820 Fax: 928-639-5828

  • Yarnell Justice Court

    Address: 22591 Looka Way, Yarnell AZ 85362
    Phone: 928-427-3318 Fax: 928-771-3362

  • Camp Verde Magistrate Court

    Address: 473 South Main Street, Suite 107, Camp Verde AZ 86322
    Phone: 928-567-6635 Fax: 928-567-9049

  • Chino Valley Municipal Court

    Address: 1988 North Road 1 West, Chino Valley AZ 86323
    Phone: 928-636-4534 Fax: 928-636-1902

  • Clarkdale Magistrate Court

    Address: 49 North 9th Street, PO Box 308, Clarkdale AZ 86324
    Phone: 928-649-7730 Fax: 928-649-7739

  • Cottonwood Municipal Court

    Address: 665 East Mingus Avenue, Cottonwood AZ 86326
    Phone: 928-634-7537 Fax: 928-634-7864

  • Jerome Municipal Court

    Address: 600 Clark Street, PO Box 335, Jerome AZ 86331
    Phone: 928-649-3250 Fax: 928-634-5462

  • Prescott Consolidated Justice/City Court

    Address: 120 South Cortez Street, Prescott AZ 86303
    Phone: 928-771-3300 Fax: 928-771-3302

  • Prescott Valley Magistrate Court

    Address: 7501 Civic Circle, Prescott Valley AZ 86314
    Phone: 928-772-8277

  • Sedona Municipal Court

    Address: 102 Roadrunner Drive, Sedona AZ 86336
    Phone: 928-282-1189 Fax: 928-204-7151

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