Long story short, I was hit with a bogus charge for a misdomeanor, first time I had ever been arrested. Upstanding citizen, ect. I entered a written plea of not guilty for my arraignment. The morning of, my status showed an update for "case disposition" scheduled within the next month. The case disposition is set at the criminal county courthouse (different from the arraignment).
Does this mean they are considering dropping the case? I know arraignment means final decision in most cases, and since I plead not guilty - that means it has to be found in my favor, right?
Thanks in advance.
typo* I meant to say case disposition means final decision.
Criminal Defense Attorney
No, it is a hearing for all parties to tell thejudge where they are in the case, what they need to do and how much time it will take.
Criminal Defense Attorney
That is most likely incorrect. By pleading not guilty, you have exercised your right to challenge the charges and have the state prove the crime against you beyond a reasonable doubt at trial. I do not practice in your area, therefore I am not positive as to the local norms; however, the court will often set cases on a disposition or case management docket after a not guilty plea (as opposed to immediately setting the case for the trial cycle) to allow the state and defendant/defense counsel to attempt to resolve the matter through a negotiated plea. If the case is not disposed of by plea agreement or dismissal of charges by the state, it will be set for trial.
If this is your first and only charge, you may be eligible for a pretrial intervention or diversion program, which is an agreement entered into with the state where the charges will be dropped so long as you satisfy certain conditions. I would recommend consulting with a criminal defense lawyer who practices in Palm Beach County. A local lawyer will be familiar with the standard practices and range of outcomes in your area. Prosecutors are usually much more receptive to plea negotiations with attorneys as opposed to self-represented defendants. Good luck to you.
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A case disposition date is really the same thing as a status conference. The attorneys talk with the judge and typically one of three things will happen: a continuance; a plea; or an announcement that the case is ready for trial.
Florida Criminal Defense Attorney
Workers' Compensation Lawyer
Typically, in Palm Beach County, case disposition is simply the next routine court date after arraignment. Arraignment is the first real court date where you formally plead not guilty and the case is then set in the trial division where case disposition is scheduled. The State Attorney will usually offer you some sort of resolution to your case at that time and it is completely up to you whether or not you want to take the offer or proceed to trial. If you do not have an attorney yet, you should definitely consider hiring one to help you through this process as criminal charges have numerous lasting ramifications. Feel free to contact my office for more information.
The answer provided is intended to be informational only. Answering your question does not create an attorney/client relationship. I am not your attorney and can not provide legal advice unless and until I am hired by you.