Chris’ Criminal Law Comments: Summary Cases Part 2

Attorney Chris PowellSummary cases such as a traffic violation or some type of nuisance are handled through the Magisterial District Judge’s office where the incident occurred. Within ten days of the issuance of a citation, usually by mail or in person, the defendant should notify the issuing authority that he/she pleads guilty or intends to plead not guilty. If a defendant pleads not guilty and fines and costs are not specified in the citation, the defendant must forward the sum of $50 as collateral for his/her appearance at the summary trial. If the defendant fails to appear at the summary trial, this will constitute consent to a trial in the defendant’s absence. If the defendant is found guilty, the collateral deposit shall be forfeited and applied toward the fine and costs.

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