Sandusky County Criminal Court handles all criminal cases that are filed in Sandusky County. See below for more information about criminal cases in Sandusky 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.
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.
Sandusky County Criminal Court hearings
Criminal hearings in Sandusky County will take place at the Sandusky County Criminal Courts. Please see here for a list of the Sandusky County Criminal Court Locations.
Appealing a guilty verdict
A defendant may appeal a guilty verdict to an appellate court. This is not a request to have another trial, but a request for an appellate court to review the case and determine that it was handled in a correct legal manner. There are a number of outcomes in an appeal including an upholding of the conviction, a finding that errors were made resulting in a retrial or resentencing or possibly a complete disimissal of all charges.
Jury Deliberations in Sandusky County
In Sandusky 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.
Sandusky County Arraignments
An arraignment is a court hearing. In Sandusky County this is the first thing that will happen in a criminal case. The defendant will be brought before a judge in Sandusky 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 Sandusky 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.
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.
Can I request a Plea Agreement?
In Sandusky County you may be able to enter into a plea agreement depending upon the severity of the charges. It is also dependant upon the prosecution willing to accept a plea agreement. You can ask your attorney to attempt to negotiate a plea agreement with the prosecution to avoid having a jury trial along with the potential for a more serious sentence. Approximately 9 out of 10 criminal cases usually end in a plea agreement.
Prosecutor in Sandusky County
In Sandusky County, the prosecutor is an attorney representing Sandusky County. In some cases, the prosecutor may actually represent Ohio. For the most part, the prosecutor in Sandusky County has discretion to both decide whether to file charges and also negotiate a potential plea deal with the defendant.
Where can I get help for my Sandusky 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 Sandusky 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.
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 Sandusky County
Any required court appearances in Sandusky 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.
Sandusky County Criminal Court Locations
Sandusky County Court of Common Pleas
Address: 100 N Park Ave, #320, Fremont OH 43420
Phone: 419-334-6161 Fax: 419-334-6164
Sandusky County Court of Common Pleas – Juvenile and Probate
Address: 100 N Park Ave, #224, Fremont OH 43420
Phone: 419-334-6200 (Juvenile) 419-334-6211 (Probate) Fax: 419-334-6210
Sandusky County Court District 1 – Clyde
Address: 847 E McPherson Hwy, Clyde OH 43410
Phone: 419-547-0915 Fax: 419-547-9198
Sandusky County Court District 2 – Woodville
Address: 215 W Main St, Woodville OH 43469
Phone: 419-849-3961 Fax: 419-849-3932
Bellevue Municipal Court
Address: 3000 Seneca Industrial Pkwy, Bellevue OH 44811
Fremont Municipal Court
Address: 323 S Front St, Fremont OH 43420
Phone: 419-552-5018 Fax: 419-332-1570