Pacific County Criminal Court handles all criminal cases that are filed in Pacific County. See below for more information about criminal cases in Pacific County.
If guilty, who sentences the defendant?
If the defendant is found guilty after the trial, the defendent will be sentenced. In some cases, this can occur at the same hearing the defendant is found guilty in court, in other cases a separate hearing will be required. Often the prosecution will request a particular sentence for the defendant and the judge will determine whether to enforce this sentence or impose a different sentence for the defendant.
I need help for my Pacific County criminal case
The best place to get information about your criminal case is from an attorney. If you cannot afford an attorney, the court will appoint one to represent you which will assist in your case. For general information about your case the Pacific County court clerk is able to provide general information about your specific case (e.g. date/time hearings, mandatory appearance, what will take place and what you will be required to do). The court clerk for Pacific County will NOT be able to provide legal advice for your case, only an attorney can provide legal advice. The court clerk can provide legal information (like the information found on this website) about your case but cannot provide advice about what you should do in your legal manner.
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.
Burden of Proof
The burden of proof is always on the prosecution in a criminal trial. In other words, the prosecution has to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant committed the crime. The defense must only prove that there is a reasonable possibility that the defendant did NOT commit the crime. If the prosecution cannot prove that the defendant committed the crime beyond a reasonable doubt, the jury will be instructed to find the defendant not-guilty.
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.
Required Court Appearances in Pacific County
Any required court appearances in Pacific 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.
Pacific County Criminal Court hearings
Criminal hearings in Pacific County will take place at the Pacific County Criminal Courts. Please see here for a list of the Pacific County Criminal Court Locations.
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 Pacific County a public defender will be appointed by the judge if you cannot afford private representation.
Arraignments in Pacific County
During an arraignment in Pacific County, a defendant appears before the court and the judge reads the charges that have been filed against the accused and also informs the defendant of his/her rights. During the arraignment in Pacific County, the defendant can choose to plead one of the following 1) Guilty 2) Not Guilty or 3) No Contest. If the defendant enters a plea of Not Guilty, a date for trial is set. In the event of a Guilty or No Contest Plea in Pacific County the defendant may be sentenced at that time or the sentencing may take place at a later date.
Prosecutor in Pacific County
In Pacific County, the prosecutor is an attorney representing Pacific County. In some cases, the prosecutor may actually represent Washington. For the most part, the prosecutor in Pacific County has discretion to both decide whether to file charges and also negotiate a potential plea deal with the defendant.
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.
Can I request a Plea Agreement?
In Pacific 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.
Pacific County Criminal Court Locations
Pacific County Superior Court
Address: 300 Memorial Drive, PO Box 67, South Bend WA 98586
Pacific County Superior Court – Juvenile
Address: 300 Memorial Drive, PO Box 93, South Bend WA 98586
Phone: 360-875-9350 Fax: 360-875-9351
Pacific County North District Court
Address: 300 Memorial Drive, PO Box 134, South Bend WA 98586
Phone: 360-875-9354 Fax: 360-875-9359
Pacific County South District Court
Address: 7013 Sandridge Road, Long Beach WA 98631
Phone: 360-642-9417 Fax: 360-642-9416
Raymond Municipal Court
Address: 230 2nd Street, Raymond WA 98577
Phone: 360-942-4102 Fax: 360-942-4137
South Bend Municipal Court
Address: 1102 W 1st Street, PO Box 9, South Bend WA 98586
Phone: 360-875-5571 Fax: 360-875-4009