St. Tammany Parish Criminal Court

St. Tammany Parish Criminal Court hears all criminal cases in St. Tammany Parish. Below you will find specific information about criminal cases and how they are handled in St. Tammany Parish.

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.

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.

St. Tammany Parish Criminal Court

St. Tammany Parish Criminal Court

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.

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.

Mandatory Appearances in St. Tammany Parish Criminal Court

At a mandatory or required court appearance in St. Tammany Parish, 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.

St. Tammany Parish Prosecutor

For criminal cases in St. Tammany Parish, the prosecutor will be a representative of St. Tammany Parish. The St. Tammany Parish 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.

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.

I need help for my St. Tammany Parish 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 St. Tammany Parish 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 St. Tammany Parish 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.

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.

St. Tammany Parish Arraignments

An arraignment is a court hearing. In St. Tammany Parish this is the first thing that will happen in a criminal case. The defendant will be brought before a judge in St. Tammany Parish 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 St. Tammany Parish 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.

Where will St. Tammany Parish criminal case hearings take place?

Criminal cases will take place at the criminal courts of St. Tammany Parish. See here for the location of the criminal courts in St. Tammany Parish.

Jury Deliberation

In a jury trial in St. Tammany Parish, after both the prosecution and defense have rested, the judge will give instructions to the jury and jury deliberations will begin. The jury will convence in a private room to discuss and deliberate the innocence or guilt of the defendant. Once the jury arrives at a unimanous decision, they will inform the judge that they have reached a decision. They will return to the court and the verdict will be read aloud. If the jury cannot reach a unaminous decision, the jury is said to be deadlocked and a mistrial will be declared in the case.

St. Tammany Parish Criminal Court Locations

  • St. Tammany 22nd Judicial District Court – Courthouse

    Address: 701 North Columbia Street, PO Box 1090, Covington LA 70434
    Phone: 985-809-8700

  • St. Tammany 22nd Judicial District Court – Slidell Annex

    Address: 520 Old Spanish Trail, Slidell LA 70458
    Phone: 985-643-6969

  • City Court of Slidell

    Address: 501 Bouscaren Street, Slidell LA 70459
    Phone: 985-643-1274 Fax: 985-646-2618

  • Justice of the Peace Ward 1

    Address: 210 Hwy 21, Madisonville LA 70447
    Phone: 504-451-9630 or 985-237-2707

  • Justice of the Peace Ward 1

    Address: 241 Galatas Road, Madisonville LA 70447
    Phone: 985-705-3608

  • Justice of the Peace Ward 2

    Address: 80414 North Willie Road, Folsom LA 70437
    Phone: 985-796-1860

  • Justice of the Peace Ward 2

    Address: PO Box 814, Folsom LA 70437
    Phone: 985-264-0786

  • Justice of the Peace Ward 3

    Address: 73477 Tammy Lane, Covington LA 70435
    Phone: 985-892-4486

  • Justice of the Peace Ward 4

    Address: PO Box 1322, Mandeville LA 70470
    Phone: 985-630-8316

  • Justice of the Peace Ward 4

    Address: 225 St. Ann Drive, Mandeville LA 70471
    Phone: 985-624-6635

  • Justice of the Peace Ward 5

    Address: 31392 Cowart-Bush Road, Bush LA 70431
    Phone: 985-886-2030

  • Justice of the Peace Ward 6

    Address: 35313 Herman Singletary Road, Pearl River LA 70452
    Phone: 985-256-7003

  • Justice of the Peace Ward 7

    Address: 59233 Pine Bay Lane, Lacombe LA 70445
    Phone: 985-882-6861

  • Justice of the Peace Ward 8

    Address: 100 Galeria Blvd, Suite 4, Slidell LA 70458
    Phone: 985-643-1629 or 985-643-1711

  • Justice of the Peace Ward 10

    Address: 23495 Silver Springs Drive, Abita Springs LA 70420
    Phone: 985-892-6450

  • Justice of the Peace Ward 10

    Address: PO Box 833, Abita Springs LA 70420
    Phone: 985-237-0186

  • Abita Springs Mayor’s Court

    Address: 22161 Level Street, PO Box 596, Abita Springs LA 70420
    Phone: 985-892-0711 Fax: 985-892-1029

  • Covington Mayor’s Court

    Address: 222 East Kirkland Street, PO Box 1059, Covington LA 70434
    Phone: 985-892-8500 Fax: 985-893-0039

  • Folsom Mayor’s Court

    Address: 82341 Railroad Avenue, PO Box 609, Folsom LA 70437
    Phone: 985-796-3300 Fax: 985-796-3337

  • Madisonville Mayor’s Court

    Address: 403 St. Francis Street, PO Box 160, Madisonville LA 70447
    Phone: 985-845-7311 Fax: 985-845-7931

  • Mandeville Mayor’s Court

    Address: 3101 East Causeway Approach, Mandeville LA 70448
    Phone: 985-626-3144 Fax: 985-624-3108

  • Pearl River Mayor’s Court

    Address: 39460 Willis Alley, PO Box 1270, Pearl River LA 70452
    Phone: 985-863-5800 Fax: 985-863-2586

  • Sun Mayor’s Court

    Address: 30285 Lock #3 Road, PO Box 818, Sun LA 70463
    Phone: 985-886-5500 Fax: 985-886-3100

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