Colorado Sex Crime Attorney Blog

First Court Appearance: What Rights the Judge Must Inform You Of

Posted by Kyle B. Sawyer | Feb 08, 2016 | 0 Comments

Learn more about what to expect at your first court appearance in Colorado.
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Upon the first court appearance for a sexual offense in Denver or Arapahoe County or upon arraignment (whichever is first), a judge has a duty to inform you (the defendant) of certain things and make sure you understand your rights. In today's blog, we'll be discussing what the court must inform you of during your first court appearance in Colorado.

Douglas County Court: What a Judge Must Inform a Defendant of in Court

When a defendant makes his first appearance in Douglas or Jefferson County court for a sexual offense, he will be informed that he:

  • Is not required to make any statement, and any statement made can and may be used against him;
  • Has a right to an attorney, lawyer or counselor at law;
  • May request a court-appointed attorney if he is an indigent person. Upon payment of the application fee, he will be assigned counsel;
  • Must make a voluntary plea and not a plea that is the result of influence or coercion from someone else;
  • Has a right to bail, if the offense is bailable and the amount of bail has been set by the court;
  • Has a right to a jury trial;
  • Has a right to know the nature of the charges against him.

Lawyer in Commerce City Discusses: What a Court Must Inform You of Before Accepting a Guilty / No Contest Plea

A court in Commerce City or Adams County will not accept a guilty plea or nolo contendere (no contest) plea unless the court first makes sure the defendant understands:

  • The nature of the criminal charge, the elements of the offense which he is pleading to and the effect of his plea;
  • The plea is a voluntary plea of the defendant and not a result of influence or coercion from anyone else;
  • The right to trial by jury;
  • The possible penalty or penalties and the possible places of incarceration;
  • That the court won't be bound by any representations made to the defendant by anyone concerning the penalty to be imposed or the granting or the denial of probation (unless the representations are included in a formal plea agreement approved by the court and supported by findings of the presentence report);
  • That there is a factual basis for the plea, unless the plea is entered as a result of a plea agreement and the factual basis is waived.

Awaiting or facing your first court appearance in Adams County, Arapahoe County, or anywhere else in Colorado can be intimidating. There are many specific and complicated aspects that you must be aware of. You should always consult an experienced criminal defense lawyer to advise you of your rights and to explain what a court appearance in Colorado will look like. Contact the Christian criminal defense attorneys at the O'Malley Law Office, who understand your faith and how it relates to your charges. Set up a free initial consultation.

Request a Free Consultation

If you or a loved one has more questions about what to expect at your first court appearance in Colorado, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent, and call the best sexual offense defense lawyers at the O'Malley Law Office today at 303-830-0880. We offer a free initial consultation to discuss your options. Together, we can protect your future.

About the Author

Kyle B. Sawyer

I have a passion for defending others in criminal cases. I am able to empathize with my clients and understand their emotions and fears. I have a unique perspective on the criminal justice system and I understand what it feels like to be wrongly accused of a crime.


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