Criminal Law in Minnesota
How to challenge a ticket in Minnesota.
First AppearanceThe ticket will have a court date and time. If there is no court date on the ticket call court administration for the county in which you received your ticket. Appear in court as scheduled. Enter a plea of not guilty. In open court make sure that your ticket is a petty misdemeanor offense. If it is not a petty misdemeanor offense consult with an attorney. If it is a petty misdemeanor offense request a trial. In Minnesota you can only have a court (judge only) trial not a jury trial for petty misdemeanor offenses. Demand from the prosecutor all evidence against you such as police reports. Inform the prosecutor the names and addresses for any witnesses you intend to call to the witness stand at your trial.
Court TrialThe prosecutor goes first and presents their witnesses and evidence. You have the right to cross-exam any witnesses against you. After the prosecutor rests (concludes his case in chief) then you can present any witnesses or evidence that you think are favorable to you. You also have the right to testify if you wanted to but you cannot be forced to testify. When you are finished presenting your side of the story (if at all - remember you have the right not to testify) the judge will decide whether or not the prosecutor proved the charge(s) against you beyond a reasonable doubt.