Chautauqua County Criminal Court hears all criminal cases in Chautauqua County. Below you will find specific information about criminal cases and how they are handled in Chautauqua 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.
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 Chautauqua 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.
What happens in Chautauqua County at an arraignment?
In Chautauqua County the defendant is brought into court and informed by the judge of the charges that have been filed against them along with informing them of their rights. At this time, the defendant can plead guilty, not guilty or no contest. If the defendant pleads guilty or no contest, there will be no trial and the defendant may be sentenced immediately or at a later date. If the defendant pleads not guilty a trial date is set.
I need help for my Chautauqua 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 Chautauqua 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 Chautauqua 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.
If guilty, who sentences the defendant?
If the defendant is found guilty after the trial, the defendent will be sentenced. In some cases, this can occur at the same hearing the defendant is found guilty in court, in other cases a separate hearing will be required. Often the prosecution will request a particular sentence for the defendant and the judge will determine whether to enforce this sentence or impose a different sentence for the defendant.
Chautauqua County Criminal Court hearings
Criminal hearings in Chautauqua County will take place at the Chautauqua County Criminal Courts. Please see here for a list of the Chautauqua County Criminal Court Locations.
The Right to Counsel
The Fifth and Sixth Amendments to the U.s. Constitution give defendants in criminal cases the right to counsel/attorney. If you cannot afford an attorney one will be appointed to represent you. Like other rights a defendant has, this one can be waived as well and alternatively you can choose to represent yourself.
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.
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.
Jury Deliberations in Chautauqua County
In Chautauqua 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.
Who is the prosecutor for Chautauqua County?
Depending upon the case, the prosecutor for Chautauqua County criminal cases will either be a representative of Chautauqua County or a representative from New York. 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.
Chautauqua County Required Court Appearances
In Chautauqua 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.
Chautauqua County Criminal Court Locations
Chautauqua County Surrogate’s Court
Address: 3 North Erie Street, PO Box C, Mayville NY 14757
Phone: 716-753-4339 Fax: 716-753-4600
Chautauqua County Court
Address: 3 North Erie Street, PO Box 292, Mayville NY 14757
Phone: 716-753-4266 Fax: 716-753-4993
Dunkirk City Court
Address: City Hall, 342 Central Avenue, Dunkirk NY 14048
Phone: 716-366-2055 Fax: 716-366-3622
Jamestown City Court
Address: Municipal Building, 200 East 3rd Street, Jamestown NY 14701
Phone: 716-483-7561 Fax: 716-483-7519
Arkwright Town Court
Address: 9543 Center Road, Fredonia NY 14063
Phone: 716-672-8672 Fax: 716-965-4845
Brocton Village Court
Address: Mailing: 34 West Main Street, PO Box B, Brocton NY 14716
Busti Town Court
Address: 121 Chautauqua Avenue, Lakewood NY 14750
Carroll Town Court
Address: 5 West Main, PO Box 630, Frewsburg NY 14738
Phone: 716-569-3484 Fax: 716-569-6331
Charlotte Town Court
Address: 8 Lester Street, PO Box 895, Sinclairville NY 14782
Phone: 716-962-9455 Fax: 716-962-3843
Chautauqua Town Court
Address: 2 Academy Street, Suite A, Mayville NY 14757
Cherry Creek Town Court
Address: 6845 Main Street, Route 83, PO Box 98, Cherry Creek NY 14723
Clymer Town Court
Address: West Main Street, Clymer NY 14724
Dunkirk Town Court
Address: 4737 Willow Road, Dunkirk NY 14048
Phone: 716-366-3945 Fax: 716-366-3544
Ellery Town Court
Address: 25 Sunnyside Avenue, PO Box 429, Bemus Point NY 14712
Phone: 716-386-2521 Fax: 716-386-2001
Ellicott Town Court
Address: 215 South Work Street, Falconer NY 14733
Ellington Town Court
Address: 805 West Main Street, Ellington NY 14732
Fredonia Village Court
Address: 9-11 Church Street, 3rd Floor, PO Box 31, Fredonia NY 14063
Phone: 716-679-2312 Fax: 716-679-3175
French Creek Town Court
Address: 9819 Route 474, Clymer NY 14724
Phone: 716-355-6204 Fax: 716-355-4222
Gerry Town Court
Address: 4519 Route 60, PO Box 163, Gerry NY 14740
Hanover Town Court
Address: 68 Hanover Street, Silver Creek NY 14136
Phone: 716-934-4770 Fax: 716-934-2850
Harmony Town Court
Address: 1001 Blockville – Watts Flats Road, Ashville NY 14710
Phone: 716-782-4460 (Court Clerk) or 716-488-1178 (Justice)
Kiantone Town Court
Address: 1521 Peck Settlement Road, Jamestown NY 14701
Mina Town Court
Address: 2883 North Road, PO Box 417, Findley Lake NY 14736
North Harmony Justice Court
Address: 3445 Old Bridge Road, PO Box 167, Stow NY 14785
Phone: 716-789-3445 ext 1
Poland Town Court
Address: 3593 Church Street, PO Box 4, Kennedy NY 14747
Pomfret Town Court
Address: 9-11 Church Street, Fredonia NY 14063
Phone: 716-672-6878 Fax: 716-672-2033
Portland Town Court
Address: 87 West Main Street, Brocton NY 14716
Phone: 716-792-4111 Fax: 716-792-9620
Ripley Town Court
Address: 1 Park Ave, PO Box 573, Ripley NY 14775
Phone: 716-736-7575 Fax: 716-736-7570
Sheridan Town Court
Address: 2702 Route 20, PO Box 73, Sheridan NY 14135
Phone: 716-672-4174 (Town Hall) or 716-672-2600 (Justices)
Sherman Town Court
Address: 111A Mill Street, PO Box 542, Sherman NY 14781
Phone: 716-761-6770 Fax: 718-761-6769
Silver Creek Village Court
Address: 172 Central Avenue, Silver Creek NY 14136
Stockton Town Court
Address: 7344 Route 380, PO Box 43, Stockton NY 14784
Phone: 716-595-3192 ext 3
Villenova Town Court
Address: 1094 Butcher Road, South Dayton NY 14138
Phone: 716-988-3476 or 716-988-5052
Westfield Town Justice Court
Address: 23 Elm Street, Westfield NY 14787
Phone: 716-326-6255 Fax: 716-326-6281
Westfield Village Justice Court
Address: 23 Elm Street, Westfield NY 14787
Phone: 716-326-6135 Fax: 716-793-4538