Blount County Criminal Court handles all criminal cases that are filed in Blount County. See below for more information about criminal cases in Blount County.
Who is the prosecutor for Blount County?
Depending upon the case, the prosecutor for Blount County criminal cases will either be a representative of Blount County or a representative from Tennessee. 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.
Required Court Appearances in Blount County
Any required court appearances in Blount 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.
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 Blount 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.
Jury Deliberations in Blount County
In Blount 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.
The Right to Trial by Jury
The Sixth Amendment of the United States Constitution guarantees the right to a trial by a jury. This is applicable for when the crime can carry a sentence of 6 months in jail OR a $500 fine, these are known as “Serious Crimes”. The defendant can also waive their right to a speedy and public trial.
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 Blount County a public defender will be appointed by the judge if you cannot afford private representation.
Blount County Criminal Court hearings
Criminal hearings in Blount County will take place at the Blount County Criminal Courts. Please see here for a list of the Blount County Criminal Court Locations.
Where can I get help for my Blount 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 Blount 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.
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.
Sentencing in Blount County
In Blount 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.
Blount County Arraignments
An arraignment is a court hearing. In Blount County this is the first thing that will happen in a criminal case. The defendant will be brought before a judge in Blount 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 Blount 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.
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.
Blount County Criminal Court Locations
Blount County Circuit Court
Address: 926 East Lamar Alexander Parkway, Maryville, TN 37804
Phone: 865-273-5400 Fax: 865-273-5411
Blount County Chancery Court
Address: 930 East Lamar Alexander Parkway, Maryville, TN 37804
Phone: 865-273-5500 Fax: 865-273-5519
Alcoa City Court
Address: 2020 North Wright Road, Alcoa, TN 37701
Maryville City Court
Address: 418 West Broadway, Maryville, TN 37801
Rockford City Court
Address: 3719 Little River Road, PO Box 32, Rockford, TN 37853
865-970-9665 Fax: 865-977-7138
Townsend City Court
Address: 133 Tiger Drive, PO Box 307, Townsend, TN 37882
Phone: 865-488-6886 Fax: 865-865-448-0908