Edwards County Criminal Court handles all criminal cases that are filed in Edwards County. See below for more information about criminal cases in Edwards 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.
What is the Burden of Proof?
The term “Burden of Proof” means that the prosecutor is required to prove the guilt of the defendant beyond a reasonable doubt. If the prosecutor cannot provide proof of the defendants guilt, then the judge or jury in a trial must find the defendant not guilty. In the United States the principle innocent until proven guilty derives from this that the defendant is assumed innocent and the prosecution has the burden of proving beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant is guilty.
Where will Edwards County criminal case hearings take place?
Criminal cases will take place at the criminal courts of Edwards County. See here for the location of the criminal courts in Edwards County.
Prosecutor in Edwards County
In Edwards County, the prosecutor is an attorney representing Edwards County. In some cases, the prosecutor may actually represent Kansas. For the most part, the prosecutor in Edwards County has discretion to both decide whether to file charges and also negotiate a potential plea deal with the defendant.
Sentencing in Edwards County
In Edwards County if the defendant is found guilty (by trial or plea), the defendant will be sentenced. This sometimes occurrs immediately after being found guilty, but can also take place at a later date. In most instances, a judge will impose the sentence that is requested by the prosecution, but they also have the descretion to impose a different sentence.
Can I appeal a guilty verdict?
If found guilty, a defendant may decide to appeal his case to an appelate court. The appellate court will not retry the case, they will examine the proceedings in the lower court to make sure they were done in a legal manner. The appellate court can either uphold the original conviction, or determine that due to errors made in the original trial, that there must be a retrial, resentencing or a complete dismissal of the charges.
Can I request a Plea Agreement?
In Edwards County you may be able to enter into a plea agreement depending upon the severity of the charges. It is also dependant upon the prosecution willing to accept a plea agreement. You can ask your attorney to attempt to negotiate a plea agreement with the prosecution to avoid having a jury trial along with the potential for a more serious sentence. Approximately 9 out of 10 criminal cases usually end in a plea agreement.
Who can help me in Edwards County?
For general information about your case the Edwards County court clerk will be able to provide legal information about your specific criminal case. Legal information is not legal advice though, the court clerk will only be able to provide information about your case, like date/time of hearings what will occur at the hearing and what you may be required to do in the hearing. They cannot provide advice about what you should do or what the best legal options may be for your particular case. Only an attorney can provide legal advice and this is your best place for information about your specific criminal proceeding. If you cannot afford to hire a private attorney to represent you, a judge will appoint an attorney to represent you, this is most often a public defender.
Required Court Appearances in Edwards County
Any required court appearances in Edwards County Criminal Court must be attended by the defendant. Failure to appear in court at your required date and time may result in the judge issuing an arrest warrant.
Arraignments in Edwards County
During an arraignment in Edwards County, a defendant appears before the court and the judge reads the charges that have been filed against the accused and also informs the defendant of his/her rights. During the arraignment in Edwards County, the defendant can choose to plead one of the following 1) Guilty 2) Not Guilty or 3) No Contest. If the defendant enters a plea of Not Guilty, a date for trial is set. In the event of a Guilty or No Contest Plea in Edwards County the defendant may be sentenced at that time or the sentencing may take place at a later date.
The Right to Trial by Jury
The Sixth Amendment of the United States Constitution guarantees the right to a trial by a jury. This is applicable for when the crime can carry a sentence of 6 months in jail OR a $500 fine, these are known as “Serious Crimes”. The defendant can also waive their right to a speedy and public trial.
What if I can’t afford an attorney?
The 6th Amendment guarantees you the right to an attorney whether or not you can afford one. If you cannot afford one, a public defender will be appointed by the court to represent you.
Edwards County Criminal Court Locations
Edwards County District Court
Address: 312 South Massachusetts Avenue, PO Box 232, Kinsley, KS 67547
Phone: 620-659-2442 Fax: 620-659-2998
Kinsley Municipal Court
Address: 721 Marsh Avenue, PO Box 7, Kinsley, KS 67547
Phone: 620-659-3611 Fax: 620-659-3613
Lewis Municipal Court
Address: 105 West Avenue B, PO Box 155, Lewis, KS 67552
Phone: 620-324-5590 Fax: 620-324-5879