Can one have a pre-trial hearing scheduled before they’ve even had a first appearance?

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Can one have a pre-trial hearing scheduled before they’ve even had a first appearance?

I am currently in county jail in one county due to a violation of probation. I also have had charges filed against me in another county but have not yet been extradited to actually face the charges. I was just informed today that there is a pre-trial hearing scheduled for next month. Is this legal?

Asked on January 25, 2012 under Criminal Law, Florida

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Typically the accused must make a first appearance in a criminal matter to enter a plea of guilty, not guilty or no contest at the arraignment before any other proceedings occur such as a pre-trial hearing.

If there is a pre-trial hearing concerning the matter where you are incarcerated, then it seems to me that there was an arraignment where a plea was entered by you. However, with respect to the alleged pre-trial hearing concerning charges filed against you in another county where you have not even made an appearance, it does not make sense that there is a pre-trial hearing scheduled for that. I suspect that the hearing as to the matter that you have not been extradited for is the first appearance, the arraignment.

If you have not consulted with a criminal defense attorney concerning your matters, I suggest that you do so.


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