Criminal Court is where you go to face charges if the State thinks you have committed a crime. The District Attorney’s Office represents the State. Each county has its own District Attorney’s Office. Only the State – not another person or agency- can charge you with a criminal violation. Circuit Criminal Court is a court of general jurisdiction and a court of record. The Circuit Court Clerk’s office is responsible for managing the caseload for Criminal Court. The office is responsible for both electronic and hard copy record management. The clerk’s office is responsible for preparation of the minutes (official record) for the Criminal Court. The Circuit Court Clerk is also the custodian of all evidence submitted in all criminal court cases.
The Criminal Court is responsible for the filing of the Grand Jury reports, appeals from lower courts, motions, orders, pleadings and other documents relating to criminal cases filed with the court. Types of cases include but are not limited to: felony, misdemeanor, petitions and post conviction. Issue process - capias, violation of probation, subpoenas and mittimus. Selection of jury panels.
Duties of Clerk’s Office
Justice is determined in the courtroom and hundreds of court appearance notices are issued each week by employees in our office to notify individuals of court hearings. Hundreds of subpoenas per month are also issued for witnesses in criminal proceedings. Accurate and complete records are critical to the criminal justice process and at every proceeding the clerk or staff member is in the courtroom to ensure that all necessary information is properly enter into each case record. Later, employees in the office carefully review the information for any omissions and/or discrepancies in the record then enter all of the information in the computer. Much of the criminal justice process occurs behind-the-scenes. Filing clerks work diligently to make certain that case files are kept current and are available when requested by the public or needed in court. The Clerk’s Office maintains trial exhibits to ensure their security and integrity. In the information area of the office, employees provide assistance to attorneys, defendants, victims and other members of the public. Among other things, pleadings are accepted, criminal histories are prepared, and court fines and fees are collected. In addition, the staff responds to voluminous daily inquiries received from the public concerning the status and other information about criminal cases and still conducts the usual daily activities involved with the office.