Cooke County Criminal Court

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

Arraignments in Cooke County

During an arraignment in Cooke 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 Cooke 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 Cooke County the defendant may be sentenced at that time or the sentencing may take place at a later date.

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.

Cooke County Criminal Court

Cooke County Criminal Court

Cooke County Prosecutor

For criminal cases in Cooke County, the prosecutor will be a representative of Cooke County. The Cooke 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.

Cooke County Required Court Appearances

In Cooke County, there are both required and non-required court appearances for the defendant. At a required or mandatory appearance hearing, the defendant is required to appear in person before the court. Failing to appear at your required hearing may result in a bench warrant being issued for your arrest by the judge.

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 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.

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.

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.

Who can help me in Cooke County?

For general information about your case the Cooke 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.

Where will Cooke County criminal case hearings take place?

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

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.

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 Cooke 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.

Cooke County Criminal Court Locations

  • Cooke County 235th District Court

    Address: 112 S Dixon St, #102, Gainesville TX 76240
    Phone: 940-668-5450 Fax: 940-668-5476

  • Cooke County Constitutional Court

    Address: 101 S Dixon St, Gainesville TX 76240
    Phone: 940-668-5437 Fax: 940-668-5522

  • Cooke County Court at Law

    Address: 101 S Dixon St, Gainesville TX 76240
    Phone: 940-668-5437 Fax: 940-668-5522

  • Cooke County Justice of the Peace Precinct 1

    Address: 320 County Rd 451, Gainesville TX 76240
    Phone: 940-668-5463 Fax: 940-668-5411

  • Cooke County Justice of the Peace Precinct 4

    Address: 304 W Obuch St, PO Box 337, Valley View TX 76272
    Phone: 940-726-3539 Fax: 940-726-5092

  • Gainesville Municipal Court

    Address: 201 Santa Fe St, Gainesville TX 76240
    Phone: 940-668-4750 Fax: 940-668-4597

  • Lindsay Municipal Court

    Address: PO Box 153, Lindsay TX 76250
    Phone: 940-665-4455

  • Muenster Municipal Court

    Address: PO Box 208, Muenster TX 76252
    Phone: 940-759-2236

  • Oak Ridge Municipal Court

    Address: 129 Oak Ridge Dr, Gainesville TX 76240
    Phone: 940-665-8474

  • Valley View Municipal Court

    Address: 308 W Obuch St, PO Box 268, Valley View TX 76272
    Phone: 940-726-3957

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.