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Everyone charged v reckless driving or racing charge need to go v a legal procedure in court. In ~ the beginning, all civilization accused of a crime have actually a appropriate to be educated of the charges they room facing. The legal process may finish with a attempt to identify guilt or innocence. However, over there are plenty of important steps between these 2 events.

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Below is the general procedure that most courts use. While some courts give different names to similar hearings – these are the common court appearances the will take place in a criminal case. That is an extremely important to be existing for every hearings unless your lawyer particularly tells friend otherwise.


Arraignment (Intake):

This is usually the very first court illustration after gift arrested or investigated because that a Washington State reckless control or racing case. In ~ arraignment you show up before a judge and also are formally educated of the charge(s) filed versus you and also asked to enter a plea.

You deserve to "waive" the arraignment because that reckless driving and racing cases, meaning that you perform not need to appear at the

arraignment, if you have actually hired a private lawyer to stand for you. This is miscellaneous we execute for ours clients, however, we can only carry out it if we have actually enough an alert before the arraignment to document the proper paperwork. This cannot be done if a public defender is representing you.

You should always enter a plea of not guilty in ~ arraignment uneven an knowledgeable attorney has advised you otherwise. This is true also if you feel the you would choose to take responsibility for what happened or that the federal government will have actually a strong case versus you. There will be opportunities to adjust your plea in the future if that is proper in your case. You will not it is in penalized in any means by the prosecutor or the judge by beginning a plea of no guilty in ~ arraignment. Both the judge and also the prosecutor recognize that pleading not guilty is a legal step and not an attempt to prevent responsibility.

At arraignment, the judge will certainly impose conditions that you have to abide by if the case is pending to avoid being taken into custody. The referee may also require that you post bail/bond to continue to be out that jail if the situation is pending. You and your lawyer will have actually an possibility to object to conditions of release and bail/bond. An skilled attorney have the right to advise girlfriend on the expected conditions of release and also the likelihood the a court setup bail in your case and help you prepare to article it easily so that you can avoid spending any time in jail.

You will receive an alert of future court hearings at her arraignment. Generally, the following hearing booked will it is in a pre-trial hearing, yet in part courts you may additionally be given notification of additional dates such together a day for trial.

Pre-Trail Hearings (Case Settings, case Scheduling)

At arraignment, a pre-trial hearing will be scheduled to enable the court to monitor the progress and also resolve worries that could arise while your situation is pending. That is an extremely common to ask that a instance be “continued” at a pre-trial hearing to provide the parties enough time to fully investigate and also negotiate her case. In some courts, the pre-trial hearing is the ideal opportunity to negotiate with the prosecutor on your case. There might be a designated negotiating prosecutor existing (not in the courtroom, often in a room just external the courtroom) who has actually authority to do decisions on her case and also is ready to talk about the case with your attorney.

In addition, the following things may happen at a pre-trial hearing:

Entry the a negotiated settlement or disposition and also sentencing if appropriate.Issues involving accessibility to evidence, evil interviews, and also the examination may be settled by the judge.Conditions that release might be modified and also the court might revoke a relax if details is gift by the prosecutor the you have actually violated the conditions imposed at arraignment.If the case will it is in proceeding come trial, the court will certainly schedule a psychological date and possibly a activity hearing.

Motion Hearings:

The complying with are instances of part legal motions that we may carry in her Washington case:

Motion come dismiss for an unconstitutional hold-up in filing charges.Motion to dismiss for failure of the government to maintain evidence.Motion come dismiss because that violation the your appropriate to a speedy trial.Motion to dismiss for insufficient proof of a crime (Knapstad). Motion to dismiss for absence of probable reason to avoid or seize.No reasonable hesitation a crime has occurred.Law enforcement officer did not have authority to carry out stop.Motion come dismiss for unlawful detention.Motion to dismiss for absence of probable reason to arrest. Movement to dismiss because that governmental misconduct.Motion come suppress proof for violation of the 4th amendment (invalid search).Improper entry into home/property by regulation enforcement.Improper find of vehicle.No authority to inquiry identification.Motion come suppress evidence for violation of access to counsel.Failure to recommend of ideal to counsel in language easily construed (State v. Prok).Failure to administer privacy.Motion to suppress proof of invocation of best to attorney.Motion come suppress proof of invocation of right to stay silent.Motion come suppress evidence of corpus Delicti.Motion come suppress involuntary statements.

Readiness Hearings (Omnibus, Jury Call):

A readiness hearing is usually scheduled almost everywhere from numerous days to several weeks prior to trial. In ~ this hearing both parties notify the court of your “readiness” because that trial. Your instance may be continued at this hear if because that some reason the situation is not ready to continue to attempt as scheduled (witnesses unavailable, additional evidence discovered, lack of courtroom availability, etc.). Additionally, your case could be solved at this hearing with a negotiated disposition and sentencing if appropriate.


While most instances are resolved prior to a trial, some instances proceed come a full trial. If that is proper for your situation to continue to a trial, girlfriend may have the choice of choosing in between a jury trial and also a bench trial. A jury trial is composed of six (misdemeanor and also gross misdemeanor) or twelve (felony) randomly selected human being from the community sitting together the “fact finder” that will decision if you are guilty or no guilty that the crime(s) charged. A bench trial enables the referee to be the sole “fact finder” in your case. In general, we recommend a jury trial for most criminal cases. This is a decision you can make ~ weighing the pros and cons v your lawyer.

In a trial, the prosecutor should prove every element of the crime(s) charged past a reasonable doubt. The fact finder (the referee or jury) will hear the admissible evidence and be instructed in the applicable law. The judge or jury will certainly then make a decision determining if the government effectively proved each element beyond a reasonable doubt (guilty) or failed come (not guilty). If the jury cannot agree on this decision, a hung jury results and a mistrial is declared. A jury have to make a unanimous decision because that a verdict to an outcome in a criminal case.


In Washington State criminal cases, sentencing decisions room made by judges. This is true even if you are uncovered guilty in ~ a jury psychological - the judge who oversaw the instance would impose any kind of sentence without input indigenous the jury.

At sentencing, the prosecutor will certainly make a referral to the judge. Unless there is a negotiated resolution ~ above the instance that calls for an “agreed” sentence recommendation between both parties, you and also your lawyer will have actually an opportunity to make a sentencing recommendation to the judge as well. These are just recommendations, and a referee will constantly have the authority to impose everything sentence he or she to trust is proper in your certain case.

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You have actually a ideal to speak on your own behalf in ~ sentencing – yet not an responsibility to. The may likewise be ideal to have actually friends or family administer letters or appear to speak on your behalf in ~ sentencing.