Hilliard Mayor’s Court
People who have been ticketed by the Hilliard Division of Police for traffic violations or arrested for misdemeanor crimes or first offenses of operating vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs (OVI) will usually have their charges filed in the city’s Mayor’s Court. Before an alleged offender appears at a hearing in this court, he or she should understand that the Mayor’s Court does not have the same traditional court proceedings as Franklin County Municipal Court.
Some people are given payable tickets that do not require a court appearance, but others are expected to be in court for their hearings and enter pleas in regard to the charges. Depending on the specific alleged offense, a guilty plea can result in fines but may also include a possible term of imprisonment.
Hilliard Mayor’s Court Lawyer
If you are facing criminal charges in Mayor’s Court following an arrest in Hilliard, Ohio, it is in your best interest to have legal counsel. Joslyn Law Firm helps clients who have been charged with OVI, traffic violations, and many other misdemeanor offenses.
Award-winning Hilliard Mayor’s Court attorney Brian Joslyn fights to get the most favorable outcomes for people throughout Franklin County and surrounding areas. You can have him review your own case and discuss your legal options by calling (614) 444-1900 right now to schedule a free, no obligation consultation.
Hilliard Mayor’s Court Process
Mayor’s Court sessions in Hilliard are held every Wednesday. Alleged offenders can begin signing in at 7:30 a.m.
A person’s first appearance in the Mayor’s Court is for an arraignment. During this stage of the process, the alleged offender will be read the charges he or she faces and enter one of the three following pleas:
- Guilty — The alleged offender admits his or her guilt and the court determines his or her sentence.
- No Contest— The alleged offender does not admit guilt, but acknowledges the truth in the allegations. While the court cannot use the plea against the alleged offender in subsequent criminal or civil proceedings, the magistrate can impose a sentence.
- Not Guilty— The alleged offender denies guilt and the case proceeds to trial.
Throughout this stage of the case, the alleged offender or his or her lawyer may attempt to negotiate a plea agreement with the prosecutor. If a deal cannot be struck, then the case will move to a trial.
The Mayor’s Court is not a court of record, so a trial in this setting is not heard by a judge and jury. Rather, it is heard and decided by the magistrate presiding over the case. However, the alleged offender has the right to transfer his or her case out of the Mayor’s Court at any time for any reason.
Common Offenses in the Hilliard Mayor’s Court
- Disorderly Conduct (Hilliard City Code § 509.03)
- Gift of Marihuana (Hilliard City Code § 513.02)
- Drug Paraphernalia (Hilliard City Code § 513.12)
- Operating a Gambling House (Hilliard City Code § 517.03)
- Resisting Arrest (Hilliard City Code § 525.09)
- Voyeurism (Hilliard City Code § 533.06)
- Soliciting (Hilliard City Code § 533.09)
- Assault (Hilliard City Code § 537.03)
- Petty Theft (Hilliard City Code § 545.05)
- Carrying Concealed Weapons (Hilliard City Code § 549.02)
Transferring Cases Out of Hilliard Mayor’s Court
People usually opt to transfer their cases to the Franklin County Municipal Court for one of the following reasons:
- Trial by Jury — In certain cases, alleged offenders prefer to have their cases decided by eight jurors rather than a single magistrate. It is highly advisable that this decision be discussed with a knowledgeable attorney who can determine whether such a transfer is recommended.
- Appeal — All alleged offenders have the right to appeal the decision of the Mayor’s Court, although they have a very limited amount of time of 10 days to do so. A person also has a similarly limited number of days to appeal a guilty verdict he or she voluntarily entered.
Penalties in Hilliard Mayor’s Court
If an alleged offender pleads guilty or is convicted of criminal charges in the Mayor’s Court, he or she may face the following sentences under Codified Ordinances of the City of Hilliard, Ohio § 501.99:
- Minor Misdemeanor — Restitution to alleged victim of crime or any survivor of the victim and fine of up to $150
- Fourth-Degree Misdemeanor — Restitution to alleged victim of crime or any survivor of the victim, up to 30 days in jail, and fine of up to $250
- Third-Degree Misdemeanor — Restitution to alleged victim of crime or any survivor of the victim, up to 60 days in jail, and fine of up to $500
- Second-Degree Misdemeanor — Restitution to alleged victim of crime or any survivor of the victim, up to 90 days in jail, and fine of up to $750
- First-Degree Misdemeanor — Restitution to alleged victim of crime or any survivor of the victim, up to 180 days in jail, and fine of up to $1,000
In addition to these penalties under city ordinances, an alleged offender who is convicted of OVI may face additional sanctions under Ohio Revised Code § 4511.19, including possible alcohol or drug assessment and treatment, driver’s license suspension, and possible restricted license plates and/or ignition interlock devices for blood alcohol levels of 0.17 percent or higher.
Hilliard Mayor’s Court Personnel
The location of and contact information for the Mayor’s Court in Hilliard is as follows:
Joint Safety Services Building
5171 Northwest Parkway
Hilliard, OH 43026
Some of the notable members of the Mayor’s Court staff include:
- Magistrate — Mark Weaver
- Hilliard Mayor’s Court Prosecutor — Gregory S. Peterson (614) 334-2348
- City of Hilliard Prosecutor for cases heard in the Franklin County Municipal Court — Kellee Roth (614) 829-7001
- Clerk of Courts — Jill VanOrder (614) 334-2348
- Deputy Clerk of Courts — Afton Ater (614) 334-2364
Questions About the Hilliard Mayor’s Court
If I’m guilty, should I bother to hire a lawyer?
Yes. There is no reason to simply plead guilty and suffer the maximum punishment. An attorney will evaluate your case, determine any defenses or challenges that could be made, and determine the best possible strategy, including negotiating with prosecutors for lesser charges. A lawyer who knows the Hilliard Mayor’s Court inside out is in the best position for that.
Can I get a public defender?
No. There are no public defenders in Hilliard Mayor’s Court. You do, however, have a right to hire your own lawyer to represent you.
How can I get a jury trial?
There are no jury trials in the Hilliard Mayor’s Court. Your attorney can help you determine whether it is best to stay in the court and be heard by the magistrate or transfer the case to Municipal Court, where a jury is an option. You can transfer your case for any reason at any time.
Find the Best Mayor’s Court Lawyer in Hilliard
Are you scheduled to appear in the Mayor’s Court in Hilliard to respond to criminal traffic or misdemeanor charges? Make sure that you have legal representation.
Brian Joslyn of Joslyn Law Firm can fight to have your charges significantly reduced or completely dismissed. Call (614) 444-1900 today to set up a free consultation that will allow him to review your case and discuss all of your possible legal defense options.