Court Process


The arraignment is the time in which you will come before the judge and be informed of the charges against you.  You will also be informed of the possible minimum and maximum punishment associated with the charges against you.  


By a plea of guilty, you admit that you committed the act charged. Before entering your plea of guilty you need to understand the following:

  • You have the right to hear the city’s evidence and to require the city to prove its case.  The law does not require you to prove anything.
  • Your plea of guilty could be used later in a civil suit for damages as an admission by you that you were at fault.
  • If you plead guilty the judge will then proceed with sentencing.

Not Guilty

A plea of not guilty means that you are informing the court that you deny guilt and that the city must prove its charges against you.  If you plead not guilty you will need to decide whether to employ an attorney to represent you at trial.

You may defend yourself, however no one else besides an attorney may represent you.  If you are a minor (under 18 years of age) a parent should be present but is not required.  If you plead not guilty your case will be set for a pre-trial on another date.

No Contest

A no contest plea simply means that you do not wish to contest the charge against you.  If you plead no contest the judge will enter a finding of guilty and proceed with sentencing.  A plea of no contest cannot be used against you as an admission of guilt in a civil suit for damages.


Pre-Trials are scheduled on the second and fourth Tuesdays of each month.  As the defendant, you have the right on your scheduled pre-trial date to speak with the city prosecutor with or without an attorney present.

The city prosecutor will review all of the information that they have available on your case and may or may not offer you a plea agreement at this time.  Keep in mind that the judge does not have to adhere to the terms in the plea agreement at sentencing.

Trial Information/Your Rights

  • You do not have the right to have your case tried before a jury in municipal court
  • You are entitled to hear all testimony introduced against you
  • You have a right to testify on your own behalf
  • You have a constitutional right not to testify

If you choose not to testify, your refusal cannot and will not be used against you in determining your guilt or innocence.  However, if you do choose to testify, the prosecutor will have the right to cross examine you.

Calling Witnesses

You may call witnesses to testify on your behalf.  You also have the right to have the court issue subpoenas for witnesses to ensure their appearance at trial.  However, you must furnish the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of these witnesses to the court, at least 10 working days before your trial date, so that the witnesses may be located and subpoenas served.  The Court will only serve subpoenas within the city; any service outside of the city will be your responsibility.

Right to Trial

Under Kansas law, you can be brought to trial only after a complaint or traffic citation has been filed.  The complaint or citation is a document which alleges what you are supposed to have done, and that your actions were unlawful.  You have a right to inspect this complaint before the trial and have it read to you at the time of trial.

The Verdict

The verdict of the judge will be based on the testimony which sounds most reasonable on the facts presented during the trial.  In making his/her determination, he/she can only consider the testimony which sounds most reasonable and on the facts that were presented during the trial.

If you are found guilty by the judge, he/she will announce the penalty at the time.  You should be prepared to pay the fine at this time. However, you may be granted an extension of 10 days to appeal the ruling of the judge.

Right to Appeal

If you are not satisfied with the judgment of the court, you have the right to appeal your case to the Reno County District Court.  If you wish to appeal the judge's decision, you must file a written notice of appeal within 14 days from the date of the original judgment with the clerk of the municipal court.  In addition, the District Court filing fee of $96.50 must be submitted with the notice of appeal.  Appeals must be filed within 14 days from the date of the original judgment.

After filing your appeal, you will be assigned a court date to appear in district court for a new arraignment date.  After arraignment, another date will be scheduled for a new trial before a different judge or jury in the Reno County District Court.

Learn More

To learn more, contact the Court Clerk at (620) 560-6251.