The City is represented by the City Attorney's office. The City has the burden of proving the violations by clear, satisfactory and convincing evidence.
Settle Your Case
Usually you can settle the case before the trial if you do so at least one week before your trial date. Call the City Attorney's Office at (608) 266-4511 if you decide to settle the case.
You may or may not have an attorney represent you at the trial. Municipal Court trials are not criminal charges, so the court will not provide a lawyer.
Prepare for Your Trial
Before your trial, you will need to prepare to support your case. This might include witnesses, evidence, or both.
Do not assume that written statements will be accepted as evidence. In most cases, they are not allowed because they are hearsay. Instead, subpoena the witnesses to support your case.
Make sure your witnesses are present for the trial. You will need to subpoena witnesses at least two weeks before the trial. Learn about how to subpoena witnesses.
Evidence & Discovery Requests
Gather any evidence you need to support your case. You can request copies of police reports related to your trial and a list of witnesses. Learn about how to gather evidence.
What Happens at Trial
The City will present their side of the case first. This usually involves calling witnesses and presenting other types of evidence. The City may call you to testify as a witness in their case.
You will have an opportunity to question the City's witnesses. Limit your questions to the facts of the case, not arguments about the case.
Once the City has presented their side of the case, you can call witnesses and present evidence if you want. You may testify in your own behalf.
The City Attorney's office can to question your witnesses, including you if you testify.
After the City and you have presented your cases, both of you can make a closing argument. The City makes their closing argument first.
The City has another chance to argue their position after closing arguments because they have the burden of proof.
Guilty or Not Guilty Verdict
After closing arguments, the judge considers all the evidence. The judge will consider City ordinances and determine whether you are guilty or not guilty of the violations.
If you do not appear for your trial or if you are found guilty, you might have to pay more than the amount on your citation. There can also be extra costs for witness fees, mileage fees and subpoenas.
There are three appeal options if you are found guilty. Each one requires a filing fee. If the City loses the trial, the City can also appeal the decision.