Ray County Criminal Court hears all criminal cases in Ray County. Below you will find specific information about criminal cases and how they are handled in Ray County.
Ray County Arraignments
An arraignment is a court hearing. In Ray County this is the first thing that will happen in a criminal case. The defendant will be brought before a judge in Ray 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 Ray 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.
Who is the prosecutor for Ray County?
Depending upon the case, the prosecutor for Ray County criminal cases will either be a representative of Ray County or a representative from Missouri. After reviewing evidence it is the prosecutor’s decision whether to file charges or drop a case. Most prosecutors have the ability to negotiate plea bargains, and determine how the case will be prosecuted.
Jury Deliberations in Ray County
In Ray County, jury deliberations will take place in a jury trial after the prosecution and defense have presented their cases and rested. At this point, the judge will provide a list of instructions to the jury about what they are allowed and not allowed to do and what verdict options are available for them to decide. The jury will be sent to a private room to discuss the evidence presented in the case and attempt to reach a unaminous decision. When a unaminous decision is reached, the jury will inform the judge that they have reached a verdict and will return to the courtroom for the verdict to be read allowed. In the event that the jury cannot reach a unanimous verdict, the jury results in a deadlock and a mistrial is declared.
Jury by Trial Right
The US Constitution (Article 3 along with the 6th Amendment) ensures an accused defendant the right to a jury trial. This applies to crimes that have a $500 fine or a potential sentence of six months in jail (aka Serious Crimes). This right to trial by jury can also be waived by a defendant.
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 Ray County a public defender will be appointed by the judge if you cannot afford private representation.
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.
Required Court Appearances in Ray County
Any required court appearances in Ray 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.
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 can I get help for my Ray 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 Ray 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.
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 Ray 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.
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.
Ray County Criminal Court locations
Criminal proceedings take place in the Ray County Criminal Courts. A list of the criminal courts are located here.
Ray County Criminal Court Locations
Ray County Circuit Court
Address: 100 West Main Street, Richmond, MO 64085
Phone: 816-776-3377 Fax: 816-776-6016
Camden Municipal Court
Address: 105 Walnut, Camden, MO 64017
Crystal Lake Municipal Court
Address: 15393 West Lakeshore Drive, Crystal Lake, MO 64024
Hardin Municipal Court
Address: 100 East Main Street, Hardin, MO 64035
Phone: 660-398-4537 Fax: 660-398-4542
Henrietta Municipal Court
Address: 406 Main Street, PO Box 227, Henrietta, MO 64036
Phone: 816-290-5337 Fax: 816-494-5340
Lawson Municipal Court
Address: 103 South Pennsylvania, PO Box 185, Lawson, MO 64062
Phone: 816-580-3217 Fax: 816-580-3914
Orrick Municipal Court
Address: 207 West South Front, PO Box 227, Orrick, MO 64077
Phone: 816-770-3607 Fax: 816-496-3814
Richmond Municipal Court
Address: 205 Summit, Richmond, MO 64085
Phone: 816-776-5304 Ext. 115 Fax: 816-776-8216