Choctaw County Criminal Court

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

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.

What is a Plea Agreement?

A plea agreement is a deal made between the prosecution and the defendant in a case, where the defendant agrees to plea guilty to a particular charge in exchange for some concession from the prosecutor. In practice, more than 90% of criminal cases end with a plea agreement.

Choctaw County Criminal Court

Choctaw County Criminal Court

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.

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.

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.

Choctaw County Arraignments

An arraignment is a court hearing. In Choctaw County this is the first thing that will happen in a criminal case. The defendant will be brought before a judge in Choctaw 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 Choctaw 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.

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.

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.

Prosecutor in Choctaw County

In Choctaw County, the prosecutor is an attorney representing Choctaw County. In some cases, the prosecutor may actually represent Mississippi. For the most part, the prosecutor in Choctaw County has discretion to both decide whether to file charges and also negotiate a potential plea deal with the defendant.

Choctaw County Criminal Court locations

Criminal proceedings take place in the Choctaw County Criminal Courts. A list of the criminal courts are located here.

I need help for my Choctaw 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 Choctaw 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 Choctaw 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.

Mandatory Appearances in Choctaw County Criminal Court

At a mandatory or required court appearance in Choctaw 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.

Choctaw County Criminal Court Locations

  • Choctaw County Circuit Court

    Address: 22 E Quinn St, PO Box 34, Ackerman MS 39735
    Phone: 662-285-6245 Fax: 662-285-2196

  • Choctaw County Chancery Court

    Address: 22 E Quinn St, PO Box 250, Ackerman MS 39735
    Phone: 662-285-6329 Fax: 662-285-3444

  • Choctaw County Youth Court

    Address: 22 E Quinn St, PO Box 250, Ackerman MS 39735
    Phone: 662-285-6329 Fax: 662-285-3444

  • Choctaw County Justice Court

    Address: 140 Jailhouse Rd, PO Box 357, Ackerman MS 39735
    Phone: 662-285-3599 Fax: 662-285-9039

  • Ackerman Municipal Court

    Address: PO Box 394, Ackerman MS 39735
    Phone: 662-285-6251 Fax: 662-285-6909

  • Weir Municipal Court

    Address: PO Box 95, Weir MS 39772
    Phone: 662-547-6123 Fax: 662-547-6363

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