Los Angeles Criminal Courts

Los Angeles Criminal Courts

If you are facing criminal charges in Los Angeles, there are a number of different courts that you can appear before. Each has their own distinct processes and procedures.

Your first court date is called an arraignment. This is where you will be told what charges you have been charged with and the evidence that is being brought against you. You will be given a copy of that evidence and you will be asked to enter a plea of not guilty, no contest or guilty.


The judges of Los Angeles Criminal Courts play a pivotal role in your case. They are tasked with ruling on motions, evidentiary objections at trial, and other requests brought by the parties to the case.

A judge also plays a crucial role in scheduling. They are often tasked with managing overcrowded court calendars, and they are obligated to refuse cases that they believe will become too long or unproductive.

This informal, but very influential role can have a profound impact on the disposition of your case. It can encourage you and your attorney to focus on settlement and avoid continued prosecution.

If you are facing charges in Los Angeles, it is important to work with an experienced and knowledgeable Los Angeles Criminal Attorney. They will help you understand the process and give you a plan to avoid costly and unnecessary consequences. They will also be able to save you time and frustration by handling your case efficiently and effectively.


Probation is a form of supervision that allows you to avoid prison. It is also a way to help people who have been convicted of crimes rehabilitate themselves.

If you have been convicted of a misdemeanor or felony, your Los Angeles Criminal Courts judge may sentence you to probation. This type of sentence saves you from jail or prison, but it also has a number of strict conditions that you must adhere to.

A probation violation can result in harsh legal consequences. If you have been accused of a probation violation, it is best to contact an experienced Los Angeles criminal defense attorney immediately.

The probation department in Los Angeles is one of the largest and most complex in the state. In addition to running jails, overseeing community service and collecting restitution, it is responsible for prosecuting many criminal cases.

Teen Court

Teen Court is a diversion program that allows first-time offenders to resolve their case before a teen jury at local high schools. This peer-driven judicial process is meant to teach responsibility, restore a sense of safety in the community and encourage youth to stay out of juvenile court.

Teen courts are staffed by youth volunteers who volunteer their time and skills to help teens understand the justice system, conduct case review sessions, prepare jurors for deliberation and sentence defendants (National Association of Youth Courts 2015). These teen courts also have classroom debriefing sessions so that the attorneys can ask jurors questions about their experiences with the process.

Compared to participants in the office-based 654 contract and school-based 654 contracts, Teen Court program participants were less likely to be rearrested (Figure 2). This effect was statistically significant across multivariable logistic models, controlling for follow-up time, age, race, gender, and risk level.

Mental Health Court

A mental health court (MHC) is a court that partners key justice system officials with leaders in the community to divert people who have severe mental illnesses from jail into a judicially supervised program and community-based treatment. These courts have been shown to reduce recidivism rates and keep people out of jail.

However, this approach can be difficult to implement if there aren’t enough trained staff to connect defendants to services and follow-up support. This is especially true in the largest criminal courthouse in downtown Los Angeles, where the program is currently facing a staff shortage.

The best way to navigate mental health courts is by ensuring you have an experienced criminal defense attorney who knows how to use mental health issues in a positive way. This can include showing that your mental illness has triggered mood or behavioral changes. This can help you prove that a mental health condition was the main cause of your charges, and may allow you to avoid a lengthy jail or prison sentence.

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About the Author: Bill K. Pasko

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