Next Council Meeting:

Your Rights in Court

The Municipal Court desires that you receive a full and fair hearing. In order to do so, you should be aware of the following facts:
  • You have the RIGHT TO BE INFORMED OF THE CHARGES
    against you.
  • You have the RIGHT TO REMAIN SILENT
    concerning the charges against you, and anything you say may be held against you.
  • You may plead GUILTY or NOT GUILTY
    to certain non-indictable charges against you, such as traffic offenses, disorderly persons offenses and municipal ordinances.

If you are charged with an INDICTABLE offense, the Judge cannot ask for your plea. You have the right to a probable cause hearing before the judge and a trial by jury at the County level, if the Grand Jury indicts you. Certain INDICTABLE offenses may be tried by the Judge if you waive indictment and trial-by-jury in writing and the county prosecutor consents. You have the right to be informed if you have been charged with such an offense.
  • You have the RIGHT TO RETAIN AN ATTORNEY.
  • You have the RIGHT TO BE ASSIGNED AN ATTORNEY:

1.  If you are charged with an indictable offense and the state Public Defender determines that you cannot afford an attorney.
– OR –
2.  If you are charged with a non-indictable offense and the Judge determines you cannot afford an attorney; and there is a likelihood that if convicted, you will either go to jail, receive a substantial fine, or your driver’s license will be suspended.
  • You have the RIGHT TO OBTAIN A REASONABLE POSTPONEMENT
    so that you may have an opportunity to consult with your attorney and prepare a proper defense.

  • You are PRESUMED TO BE INNOCENT
    until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
  • You have the RIGHT TO TESTIFY OR NOT TO TESTIFY
    on your own behalf.

  • You have the RIGHT TO CALL OR SUBPOENA WITNESSES
    to testify on your own behalf.

  • You have the RIGHT TO APPEAL
    within 20 days of any conviction.