Putnam County Criminal Court handles all criminal cases that are filed in Putnam County. See below for more information about criminal cases in Putnam County.
Putnam County Required Court Appearances
In Putnam 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.
Who can help me in Putnam County?
For general information about your case the Putnam 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.
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.
Prosecutor in Putnam County
In Putnam County, the prosecutor is an attorney representing Putnam County. In some cases, the prosecutor may actually represent New York. For the most part, the prosecutor in Putnam County has discretion to both decide whether to file charges and also negotiate a potential plea deal with the defendant.
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 Putnam 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.
In a jury trial in Putnam County, 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.
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.
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.
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.
Where will Putnam County criminal case hearings take place?
Criminal cases will take place at the criminal courts of Putnam County. See here for the location of the criminal courts in Putnam County.
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.
Putnam County Arraignments
An arraignment is a court hearing. In Putnam County this is the first thing that will happen in a criminal case. The defendant will be brought before a judge in Putnam 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 Putnam 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.
Putnam County Criminal Court Locations
Putnam County Surrogate’s Court
Address: 44 Gleneida Avenue, Carmel NY 10512
Phone: 845-208-7860 Fax: 845-228-5761
Putnam County Court
Address: 20 County Center, Carmel NY 10512
Phone: 845-208-7830 Fax: 845-208-7869
Brewster Village Court
Address: 50 Main Street, Brewster NY 10509
Phone: 845-279-4020 Fax: 845-278-7653
Carmel Justice Court
Address: Town Hall, 60 McAlpin Avenue, Mahopac NY 10541
Phone: 845-628-1500 Fax: 845-628-4550
Cold Spring Village Court
Address: 87 Main Street, Cold Spring NY 10516
Kent Justice Court
Address: 25 Sybil’s Crossing, Kent Lakes NY 10512
Phone: 845-225-1606 Fax: 845-306-5280
Nelsonville Village Court
Address: 258 Main Street, Nelsonville NY 10516
Patterson Justice Court
Address: 1144 State Route 311, PO Box 416, Patterson NY 12563
Phone: 845-878-1080 Fax: 845-878-1018
Philipstown Justice Court
Address: 238 Main Street, PO Box 155, Cold Spring NY 10516
Phone: 845-265-2951 Fax: 845-265-3948
Putnam Valley Town Court
Address: 265 Oscawana Lake Road, Putnam Valley NY 10579
Phone: 845-526-3050 Fax: 845-526-2930
Southeast Justice Court
Address: 1360 Route 22, Brewster NY 10509
Phone: 845-279-8939 Fax: 845-279-1612