If you break the law in Cheviot, you may be allowed to plead your case in Mayor’s Court, a sanctioned judicial body recognized by the State of Ohio. Most minor crimes and traffic offenses are handled in Mayor’s Court, while serious crimes, such as felonies, are handled by the Hamilton County court system.
If the citation is a “must appear in court” ticket, it will be checked as such on your ticket.
Please be sure to check the upper left-hand corner of the ticket to see which court you have been cited. Hamilton County Municipal Court’s phone number is (traffic) 513-946-6041 and (criminal) 513-946-6040.
Your 1st appearance in Cheviot Mayor’s Court is the arraignment. If you enter a plea of “guilty” or “no contest”, your case can be heard that evening. If you enter a plea of “not guilty”, your case may be continued in order to notify the Police Officer and any witnesses to appear for trial. If you are found guilty at trial, you will be responsible for subpoenas, lab tests, police appearance, etc.
The charge against you will be read and you will have the opportunity to request a continuance or enter a plea. The pleas are:
o Guilty – It is a complete admission of guilt. You are saying that you have committed the offense with which you have been charged. If you plead guilty, a statement may be given on behalf of the city concerning the events, which gave rise to the charge. If you want to, you will then be permitted to make a statement on your own behalf.
o No Contest – This plea is not an admission of guilt but is an admission to the truth of the facts stated in the affidavit. It is then for the court to determine whether the admitted facts constitute the offense. A No Contest Plea cannot be used against you in any subsequent Civil or Criminal Proceeding.
o Not Guilty – This plea is saying that you did not commit the offense with which you are charged. A trial will be set for a later date and witnesses can be subpoenaed for that trial date. After you have entered your plea the prosecutor will read the facts concerning the charges. You will be given an opportunity to speak to the facts as presented by the prosecutor. You will have the right to present evidence on your own behalf. Following your testimony, the court will then issue a verdict. If the verdict is guilty, the prosecutor will then advise the court of your past driving or criminal history and any other relevant facts. The court will then determine the amount of the fine and / or jail time.
If you are not a citizen, a conviction could result in your deportation or denial of citizenship.
In the event you are convicted of a traffic offense, a record of that conviction will be sent to the Bureau of Motor Vehicles and will become a part of your driving record.
If you have any questions regarding any part of your case, procedure, the charge against you, or your rights, you may discuss them with the prosecutor before your case is called. If you wish to change your plea, please advise the Court when your case is called.