Racine County Criminal Court handles all criminal cases that are filed in Racine County. See below for more information about criminal cases in Racine County.
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.
Racine County Required Court Appearances
In Racine 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.
I need help for my Racine 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 Racine 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 Racine 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.
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.
Who is the prosecutor for Racine County?
Depending upon the case, the prosecutor for Racine County criminal cases will either be a representative of Racine County or a representative from Wisconsin. 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.
Racine County Criminal Court locations
Criminal proceedings take place in the Racine County Criminal Courts. A list of the criminal courts are located here.
Racine County Arraignments
An arraignment is a court hearing. In Racine County this is the first thing that will happen in a criminal case. The defendant will be brought before a judge in Racine 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 Racine 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.
In a jury trial in Racine County, after both the prosecution and defense have rested, the judge will give instructions to the jury and jury deliberations will begin. The jury will convence in a private room to discuss and deliberate the innocence or guilt of the defendant. Once the jury arrives at a unimanous decision, they will inform the judge that they have reached a decision. They will return to the court and the verdict will be read aloud. If the jury cannot reach a unaminous decision, the jury is said to be deadlocked and a mistrial will be declared in the case.
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.
Right to Jury Trial
For “Serious Crimes”, those that can have a potential penalty of 6 months in jail OR a minimum $500 penalty, the US Constitution guarantees a right to trial by jury. This is guaranteed by Article III of the Constitution and the 6th Amendment. The accused has the ability to waive their right to trial by jury.
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.
At a sentence hearing the judge will inform the defendant of the sentence that will be imposed. This sometimes occurs at the same hearing in which the defendant is found guilty (either by trial or plea agreement). In can also occur at a later date, most often this is due to the complexity of the case where more time is needed to determine the appropriate sentence.
Racine County Criminal Court Locations
Racine County Circuit Court
Address: 730 Wisconsin Avenue, Racine WI 53403
Phone: 262-636-3333 Fax: 262-636-3341
City of Burlington Municipal Court
Address: 300 North Pine Street, Burlington WI 53105
Phone: 262-342-1129 Fax: 262-342-1178
City of Racine Municipal Court
Address: 800 Center Street, Racine WI 53403
Phone: 262-636-9263 Fax: 262-636-9110
District II Reserve Municipal Court
Address: 1777 100th Street, Franksville WI 53126
Town of Burlington Municipal Court
Address: 32288 Bushnell Road, Burlington WI 53105
Phone: (262) 763-8591 Fax: 262-763-9485
Town of Dover Municipal Court
Address: 4110 South Beaumont Avenue, PO Box 670, Kansasville WI 53139
Phone: 262-878-2200 Fax: 262-878-2595
Town of Norway Municipal Court
Address: 6419 Heg Park Road, Wind Lake WI 53185
Phone: 262-895-2195 Fax: 262-895-3651
Town of Raymond Municipal Court
Address: 2255 76th Street, Franksville, WI 53126
Town of Waterford Municipal Court
Address: 415 North Milwaukee Street, Waterford WI 53185
Phone: 262-534-4880 Fax: 262-534-7789
Village of Caledonia Municipal Court
Address: 6900 Nicholson Road, Caledonia WI 53108
Phone: 262-835-6467 Fax: 262-835-4799
Village of Mt. Pleasant Municipal Court
Address: 8811 Campus Drive, Racine WI 53406
Phone: 262-664-7831 Fax: 262-664-7899
Village of Sturtevant Municipal Court
Address: 2801 89th Street, Sturtevant WI 53177
Phone: 262-886-7207 Fax: 262-886-7205
Village of Union Grove Municipal Court
Address: 925 15th Avenue, Union Grove WI 53182
Phone: 262-878-2668 Fax: 262-878-3782
Village of Waterford Municipal Court
Address: 123 North River Street, Waterford WI 53185
Phone: 262-534-3980 Fax: 262-534-5373
Wind Point / North Bay Joint Municipal Court
Address: 4725 Lighthouse Drive, Racine WI 53402
Phone: 262-898-7071 Fax: 262-639-5727