Sedgwick County Criminal Court hears all criminal cases in Sedgwick County. Below you will find specific information about criminal cases and how they are handled in Sedgwick County.
Burden of Proof Requirement
In a criminal case in the United States, the burden of proof always requires the prosecutor to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant is guilty. This is a high threshold that must be met by the prosecution when presenting evidence in a case. If the prosecution fails in it’s burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt the judge must find the defendant not guilty. In a jury trial, the judge will inform the jury what this burden is and their obligation to find the defendant not guilty if they feel the prosecution did prove the defendant’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.
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.
Sedgwick County Required Court Appearances
In Sedgwick County, there are both required and non-required court appearances for the defendant. At a required or mandatory appearance hearing, the defendant is required to appear in person before the court. Failing to appear at your required hearing may result in a bench warrant being issued for your arrest by the judge.
Sedgwick County Prosecutor
For criminal cases in Sedgwick County, the prosecutor will be a representative of Sedgwick County. The Sedgwick 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.
Sedgwick County Criminal Court hearings
Criminal hearings in Sedgwick County will take place at the Sedgwick County Criminal Courts. Please see here for a list of the Sedgwick County Criminal Court Locations.
Sedgwick County Arraignments
An arraignment is a court hearing. In Sedgwick County this is the first thing that will happen in a criminal case. The defendant will be brought before a judge in Sedgwick 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 Sedgwick 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.
Sentencing in Sedgwick County
In Sedgwick 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.
What is a Plea Agreement?
A plea agreement is a deal made between the prosecution and the defendant in a case, where the defendant agrees to plea guilty to a particular charge in exchange for some concession from the prosecutor. In practice, more than 90% of criminal cases end with a plea agreement.
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.
Appealing a guilty verdict
A defendant may appeal a guilty verdict to an appellate court. This is not a request to have another trial, but a request for an appellate court to review the case and determine that it was handled in a correct legal manner. There are a number of outcomes in an appeal including an upholding of the conviction, a finding that errors were made resulting in a retrial or resentencing or possibly a complete disimissal of all charges.
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.
Where can I get help for my Sedgwick County criminal case?
The 6th amendment of the United States Constitution provides a criminal defendant with the right to an attorney. As read in the miranda rights, this means that if a defendant cannot afford to hire a private attorney a legal attorney will be appointed to the defendant to represent him at no cost to the defendant. This is often a public defender. In addition, the court clerk for Sedgwick County will also be able to provide general information about a specific criminal case. The clerk can only provide information and is not an attorney so they cannot provide legal advice, only a licensed attorney can provide legal advice about what the best options for are for your particular case.
Sedgwick County Criminal Court Locations
Sedgwick County District Court
Address: 525 North Main Street, Wichita, KS 67203
Phone: 316-660-5900 Fax: 316-941-5361
Sedgwick County Court
Address: 510 North Main Street, Suite 103, Wichita, KS 67203
Andale Municipal Court
Address: 326 North Main Street, PO Box 338, Andale, KS 67001
Phone: 316-444-2351 Fax: 316-444-2322
Bel Aire Municipal Court
Address: 7651 East Central Park Avenue, Bel Aire, KS 67226
Phone: 316-744-2451 Fax: 316-744-3739
Bentley Municipal Court
Address: 150 South Wichita Avenue, PO Box 273, Bentley, KS 67016
Phone: 316-796-1799 Fax: 316-796-1711
Cheney Municipal Court
Address: 131 North Main Street, Cheney, KS 67025
Phone: 316-540-3622 Fax: 316-542-0185
Clearwater Municipal Court
Address: 129 East Ross Avenue, Clearwater, KS 67026
Phone: 620-584-2317 Fax: 620-584-3118
Colwich Municipal Court
Address: 310 South 2nd Street, PO Box 158, Colwich, KS 67030
Phone: 316-796-1025 Fax: 316-796-0913
Derby Municipal Court
Address: 229 North Baltimore, Derby, KS 67037
Phone: 316-788-1511 Fax: 316-788-3706
Eastborough Municipal Court
Address: 1 Douglas Avenue, Eastborough, KS 67207
Phone: 316-682-4111 Fax: 316-682-4193
Garden Plain Municipal Court
Address: 505 North Main, PO Box 336, Garden Plain, KS 67050
Phone: 316-531-2321 Fax: 316-535-2207
Goddard Municipal Court
Address: 118 North Main, PO Box 667, Goddard, KS 67052
Phone: 316-794-2441 Fax: 316-794-2401
Haysville Municipal Court
Address: 200 West Grand, PO Box 404, Haysville, KS 67060
Phone: 316-529-5920 Fax: 316-529-5921
Kechi Municipal Court
Address: 220 West Kechi Road, PO Box 88, Kechi, KS 67067
Phone: 316-744-6611 Fax: 316-201-6962
Maize Municipal Court
Address: 10100 Grady Avenue, PO Box 245, Maize, KS 67101
Phone: 316-722-8736 Fax: 316-425-3380
Mount Hope Municipal Court
Address: 112 West Main Street, PO Box 10, Mount Hope, KS 67108
Phone: 316-661-2211 Fax: 316-661-2212
Mulvane Municipal Court
Address: 211 North 2nd, Mulvane, KS 67110
Phone: 316-777-9515 Fax: 316-777-4081
Park City Municipal Court
Address: 6110 North Hydraulic, Park City, KS 67219
Phone: 316-744-6417 Fax: 316-744-3865
Valley Center Municipal Court
Address: 616 East 5th Street, Valley Center, KS 67147
Phone: 316-755-7309 Fax: 316-755-7339
Wichita Municipal Court
Address: 455 North Main, 2nd Floor, Wichita, KS 67202
Phone: 316-268-4611 Fax: 316-268-4249