Initial Appearance - Adults
INITIAL APPEARANCE: ADULTS
An initial appearance for an adult charged with violating a City of Middleton ordinance is generally held every other Thursday night, commencing at 5:00 p.m. Your citation will indicate the specific date.
When you arrive at Court, you will need to decide what plea to enter. Guilty, Not Guilty or No Contest.
If you are going to enter a plea of Guilty or No Contest, please enter the courtroom and print your name on the "sign-in" sheet. All names are called according to the order listed on the "sign-in" sheet. When your name is called, you should approach the bench. The Judge will read to you the pertinent parts of the citation, such as the charge, date of the alleged violation, and other key information. Then, you will be asked to enter a plea of Guilty, Not Guiltyor No Contest.
If you enter a plea of Guilty you are admitting that you violated the law & the Court will find you guilty. You will have an opportunity to explain any circumstances that you think the Judge should consider regarding your citation, before issuing a sentence. The sentence may include a fine & other penalties.
If you enter plea of No Contest you are not admitting your guilt. However, the Court will find you guilty. This plea & finding cannot be used against you in other civil proceedings for the purpose of liability. A sentence will be imposed upon a plea of No Contest. You will have an opportunity to explain any circumstances that you think the Judge should consider regarding your citation. The sentence may include a fine & other penalties.
After entering your plea, you may wish to make a statement to the Court about your version of what happened. The Judge will listen to such statements before any sentence is imposed
If you are going to enter a plea of Not Guilty please go up to the court window, to fill out the Not Guiltyplea form. The next step will then be a Pre-Trial Conference with the City Prosecutor. Please see the Pre-Trial Conference page on the Municipal Court website for additional information.
If you wish to enter a Not Guilty plea without appearing in Court, your plea must be in writing & received prior to your scheduled initial appearance. If you enter a Not Guilty plea by mail, fax or email, provide your name, current mailing address, current telephone number and citation number.
The Court will allow you to re-schedule your initial appearance one time. You must contact the court prior to the initial appearance to request a continuance.
If you fail to appear in Court & you have not entered a written plea of not guilty, paid the deposit amount on your citation or obtained a continuance for another date, the Court will find you Guilty by Default. The fine amount & points on your citation will remain as is. You will receive a notice of default judgment in the mail.
You may have an attorney assist you, but you will have to provide your own attorney. The Court will not appoint an attorney for you.