Jefferson County Criminal Court handles all criminal cases that are filed in Jefferson County. See below for more information about criminal cases in Jefferson County.
In a jury trial in Jefferson 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.
Jefferson County Criminal Court locations
Criminal proceedings take place in the Jefferson County Criminal Courts. A list of the criminal courts are located here.
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 Jefferson 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.
Required Court Appearances in Jefferson County
Any required court appearances in Jefferson 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.
Prosecutor in Jefferson County
In Jefferson County, the prosecutor is an attorney representing Jefferson County. In some cases, the prosecutor may actually represent Ohio. For the most part, the prosecutor in Jefferson County has discretion to both decide whether to file charges and also negotiate a potential plea deal with the defendant.
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.
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.
Where can I get help for my Jefferson 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 Jefferson 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.
What happens in Jefferson County at an arraignment?
In Jefferson 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.
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.
Sentencing in Jefferson County
In Jefferson 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.
Jefferson County Criminal Court Locations
Jefferson County Court of Common Pleas
Address: 301 Market St, PO Box 1326, Steubenville OH 43952
Phone: 740-283-8583 Fax: 740-283-8597
Jefferson County Court of Common Pleas – Juvenile Division
Address: 16001 State Route 7, PO Box 549, Steubenville OH 43952
Jefferson County Court of Common Pleas – Probate Division
Address: 301 Market Street, PO Box 549, Steubenville OH 43952
Jefferson County Court #3 – Dillonvale
Address: 174 Smithfield St, Dillonvale OH 43917
Phone: 740-769-2903 Fax: 740-69-7640
Jefferson County Court #1 – Toronto
Address: 1007 Franklin St, Toronto OH 43964
Phone: 740-537-2020 Fax: 740-537-1866
Jefferson County Court #2 – Wintersville
Address: 30 Talbot Dr, Wintersville OH 43953
Phone: 740-264-7644 Fax: 740-264-3909
Steubenville Municipal Court
Address: Phone: 740-283-6000, x2200 Fax: 740-283-6167
Dillonvale Mayor’s Court
Address: PO Box 546, Dillonvale OH 43917
Phone: 740-769-2570 Fax: 740-769-2570
Empire Mayor’s Court
Address: PO Box 245, Empire OH 43926
Phone: 740-537-1802 Fax: 740-537-2875
Mingo Junction Mayor’s Court
Address: 501 Commercial St, Mingo Junction OH 43938
Phone: 740-535-1186 Fax: 740-535-9160
Stratton Mayor’s Court
Address: PO Box 33, Stratton OH 43961
Phone: 740-537-4977 Fax: 740-537-1513
Wintersville Mayor’s Court
Address: 200 Grove St, Wintersville OH 43953