Spokane County Criminal Court

Spokane County Criminal Court handles all criminal cases that are filed in Spokane County. See below for more information about criminal cases in Spokane County.

Required Court Appearances in Spokane County

Any required court appearances in Spokane 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.

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.

Spokane County Criminal Court

Spokane County Criminal Court

Appealing a Criminal Conviciton

A defendant may appeal a criminal conviction to an appellate court. In an appeal, the actual trial is not redone, but the appellate court hears arguments that the criminal case was not handled in a legal manner at the original criminal court. The appellate court can either uphold the conviction, or determine that errors were made and may request a retrial, a resentencing of the defendant or that the charges be dismissed.

Who can help me in Spokane County?

For general information about your case the Spokane County court clerk will be able to provide legal information about your specific criminal case. Legal information is not legal advice though, the court clerk will only be able to provide information about your case, like date/time of hearings what will occur at the hearing and what you may be required to do in the hearing. They cannot provide advice about what you should do or what the best legal options may be for your particular case. Only an attorney can provide legal advice and this is your best place for information about your specific criminal proceeding. If you cannot afford to hire a private attorney to represent you, a judge will appoint an attorney to represent you, this is most often a public defender.

Can I request a Plea Agreement?

In Spokane 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.

Sentencing in Spokane County

In Spokane 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.

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.

What happens in Spokane County at an arraignment?

In Spokane 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.

Spokane County Criminal Court hearings

Criminal hearings in Spokane County will take place at the Spokane County Criminal Courts. Please see here for a list of the Spokane County Criminal Court Locations.

Who is the prosecutor for Spokane County?

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

Jury Deliberations in Spokane County

In Spokane 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.

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.

Spokane County Criminal Court Locations

  • Spokane County Superior Court

    Address: 1116 W Broadway Avenue, Room 300, Spokane WA 99260
    Phone: 509-477-2211

  • Spokane County Superior Court – Juvenile

    Address: 1208 W Mallon Avenue, Spokane WA 99201
    Phone: 509-477-4742 Fax: 509-477-2699

  • Spokane County District Court

    Address: 1100 W Mallon Avenue, PO Box 2352, Spokane WA 99260
    Phone: 509-477-4770 Fax: 509-477-6445

  • Spokane County District Court

    Address: 12710 E Sprague Avenue, Spokane Valley WA 99216
    Phone: 509-477-3390

  • Spokane County District Court – Civil

    Address: Phone: 509-477-4770, x8 Fax: 509-477-6387

  • Airway Heights Municipal Court

    Address: Mailing: 1208 S Lundstrom, Airway Heights WA 99001
    Phone: 509-244-2773 Fax: 509-244-1852

  • Cheney Municipal Court

    Address: 611 2nd Street, Cheney WA 99004
    Phone: 509-498-9231 Fax: 509-498-9332

  • Medical Lake Municipal Court

    Address: 611 2nd Street, Cheney WA 99004
    Phone: 509-498-9231 Fax: 509-498-9332

  • Spokane Municipal Court

    Address: 1100 W Mallon Avenue, Spokane WA 99260
    Phone: 509-625-4400 Fax: 509-625-4442

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