Carroll County Criminal Court hears all criminal cases in Carroll County. Below you will find specific information about criminal cases and how they are handled in Carroll County.
Carroll County Prosecutor
For criminal cases in Carroll County, the prosecutor will be a representative of Carroll County. The Carroll County prosecutor reviews all evidence and ultimately decides whether to file or dismiss charges in the case. Most of the time, the prosecutor has leeway in plea negotiations and determines how the case will be prosecuted.
Carroll County Arraignments
An arraignment is a court hearing. In Carroll County this is the first thing that will happen in a criminal case. The defendant will be brought before a judge in Carroll 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 Carroll 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.
Can I request a Plea Agreement?
In Carroll 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.
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.
Right to Jury Trial
For “Serious Crimes”, those that can have a potential penalty of 6 months in jail OR a minimum $500 penalty, the US Constitution guarantees a right to trial by jury. This is guaranteed by Article III of the Constitution and the 6th Amendment. The accused has the ability to waive their right to trial by jury.
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.
Where can I get help for my Carroll 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 Carroll 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.
Mandatory Appearances in Carroll County Criminal Court
At a mandatory or required court appearance in Carroll County, the defendant must appear before the court. In the event of a “Failure to Appear” the judge may issue a warrant for the arrest of the defendant. Note: not all criminal hearings are mandatory, in a non-mandatory hearing an attorney may appear on your behalf without you being in court.
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.
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.
Jury Deliberations in Carroll County
In Carroll 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.
Carroll County Criminal Court locations
Criminal proceedings take place in the Carroll County Criminal Courts. A list of the criminal courts are located here.
Carroll County Criminal Court Locations
Carroll County Circuit Court
Address: 99 Court Square, Suite 103, Huntingdon, TN 38344
Phone: 731-986-1932 Fax: 731-986-1930
Carroll County Chancery Court
Address: 99 Court Square, Suite 105, Huntingdon, TN 38344
Carroll County General Sessions Court
Address: 99 Court Square, Suite 104, Huntingdon, TN 38344
Phone: 731-986-1926 Fax: 731-986-1930
Carroll County Juvenile Court
Address: 99 Court Square, Suite 103, Huntingdon, TN 38344
Bruceton City Court
Address: 209 Cheatham Street, PO Box 136, Bruceton, TN 38317
Clarksburg City Court
Address: PO Box 117, Clarksburg, TN 38324
Hollow Rock City Court
Address: 27960 Broad Street, PO Box 247, Hollow Rock, TN 38342
Phone: 731-586-7773 Fax: 731-586-7773
Huntingdon City Court
Address: 12740 Lexington Street, PO Box 668, Huntingdon, TN 38344
McKenzie City Court
Address: 2470 Cedar Street, PO Box 160, McKenzie, TN 38201
Phone: 731-352-2292 Fax: 731-352-5235
Trezevant City Court
Address: 5560 North Broad Street, PO Box 100, Trezevant, TN 38258