Goliad County Criminal Court

Goliad County Criminal Court hears all criminal cases in Goliad County. Below you will find specific information about criminal cases and how they are handled in Goliad County.

Plea Agreements

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 Goliad 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.

What if I can’t afford an attorney?

The 6th Amendment guarantees you the right to an attorney whether or not you can afford one. If you cannot afford one, a public defender will be appointed by the court to represent you.

Goliad County Criminal Court

Goliad County Criminal Court

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.

Sentencing in Goliad County

In Goliad 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.

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.

Who is the prosecutor for Goliad County?

Depending upon the case, the prosecutor for Goliad County criminal cases will either be a representative of Goliad County or a representative from Texas. 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.

What is Jury Deliberation?

After both the prosecution and defense have presented their cases, the judge in the case will provide instructions to the jury about what they must decide. The jury will be dismissed to the jury room where they will deliberate about the guilt or innocence of the defendant. After reaching a unaminous decision, they return their decision to the court where it is read aloud in the courtroom. If the jury is unable to reach a unaminous decision, the jury is deadlocked, also known as a hung jury, in which a mistrial will be declared.

Where will Goliad County criminal case hearings take place?

Criminal cases will take place at the criminal courts of Goliad County. See here for the location of the criminal courts in Goliad County.

What happens in Goliad County at an arraignment?

In Goliad 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.

Can I appeal a guilty verdict?

If found guilty, a defendant may decide to appeal his case to an appelate court. The appellate court will not retry the case, they will examine the proceedings in the lower court to make sure they were done in a legal manner. The appellate court can either uphold the original conviction, or determine that due to errors made in the original trial, that there must be a retrial, resentencing or a complete dismissal of the charges.

Required Court Appearances in Goliad County

Any required court appearances in Goliad 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.

Where can I get help for my Goliad 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 Goliad 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.

Goliad County Criminal Court Locations

  • Goliad County 24th District Court

    Address: 127 N Courthouse Sq, PO Box 50, Goliad TX 77963
    Phone: 361-645-3294 Fax: 361-645-3858

  • Goliad County 135th District Court

    Address: 127 N Courthouse Sq, PO Box 50, Goliad TX 77963
    Phone: 361-645-3294 Fax: 361-645-3858

  • Goliad County 267th District Court

    Address: 127 N Courthouse Sq, PO Box 50, Goliad TX 77963
    Phone: 361-645-3294 Fax: 361-645-3858

  • Goliad County Constitutional Court

    Address: 127 N Courthouse Sq, PO Box 50, Goliad TX 77963
    Phone: 361-645-3294 Fax: 361-645-3858

  • Goliad County Justice of the Peace Precinct 1

    Address: 329 W Franklin St, Goliad TX 77963
    Phone: 361-645-3663 Fax: 361-645-8067

  • Goliad County Justice of the Peace Precinct 2

    Address: 329 W Franklin St, Goliad TX 77963
    Phone: 361-645-3320 Fax: 361-645-4127

  • Goliad Municipal Court

    Address: PO Drawer 939, Goliad TX 77963
    Phone: 361-645-3454

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