Tuolumne County Misdemeanor Proceedings     print
Misdemeanor charges have been filed against you by the District Attorney. The following information may answer some of your initial questions about the procedures in your case. PLEASE READ THIS ENTIRE INFORMATION SHEET.

First, the charges in the complaint may be different from those on your booking sheet. When you were arrested the officer booked you on the offenses he or she believed were appropriate. The report went to the District Attorney's office and a Deputy District Attorney reviewed the file and prepared a complaint which contained the charges he believed appropriate. The complaint is the official charging document and those are the charges we must now address.

Arraignment: The first hearing is an Arraignment. This is where you enter a plea of not guilty. If Mr. Webster has been retained prior to your first appearance he will probably continue the arraignment. Further hearings will be set at that time as well.

Pretrial Hearing: Your first hearing after the arraignment is usually a Pretrial Hearing, although sometimes this hearing may be skipped. The purpose of this hearing is to try and keep the case on track, and perhaps even settle it. Some cases do settle at this point.

Trial Readiness Conference (RTF): The next hearing after the pretrial is the Trial Readiness Conference. The Trial Readiness Conference (TRC) is a hearing where the attorneys meet with the judge to see if the case is ready, or nearly ready for trial, and to see if it can be settled. Most cases which will settle will do so at this hearing because the judge is involved for the first time in the settlement discussions and provides input to the process. Your attorney will come out after the meeting and talk to you about any offer. If the offer is acceptable then you may, depending on the charges, be asked to fill out some paperwork, and then waive your rights and enter a guilty or no contest plea to the agreed upon charges for the agreed upon disposition. If the offer is not acceptable then the jury trial will be confirmed.

If your case is going to trial it is critical that you meet with Mr. Webster to prepare for it. There are too many things to discuss or address here. Please be advised that we don't pick a jury and then start the trial on a different day. Your trial starts on the date set with jury selection and continues straight through to the end and normally ends on the day it begins.

Your Input Is Important: We cannot help you to the full extent possible if you do not talk to us. If you are out of custody it is your responsibility to contact the office and make an appointment at such times as we may advise you is necessary.