Trial Settings

Docket Order

Subject to the discretion of the Judge calling the docket, the order of cases proceeding to trial (both bench and jury) shall be as follows:

  1. Juvenile Arraignment
  2. Minor Arraignment
  3. Adult Arraignment
  4. Juvenile Trial
  5. Minor Trial
  6. Adult Trial

Trial by Jury
 

Preferential Setting

To receive a preferential setting, subject to the Judge's approval, a party must meet one of the following criteria:

  • Reside more than fifty (50) miles outside of the city;
  • Have a condition, illness, or injury that would necessitate an expedited disposition of the case; or
  • Have a nondefendant witness who has appeared on at least two prior trial settings without their case being reached.

 

Required Appearance

All interested parties must be present and in the courtroom at the time the docket is called.  Interest parties are defined as Defendants, Defense Counsel and State's Counsel.

Failure to Appear

If the defendant fails to appear in person and announce ready for trial at the time the case is called without showing good cause, the Court may find the defendant in contempt and issue a warrant for the defendant's arrest and may require that the defendant post a bond.

If State's witness is not present, State shall show good cause for witness's absence, or proceed to trial.

Record of the Proceedings

The Municipal Court of the City of Liberty is not a court of record.  No court reporter will be routinely provided by the Court. No recording of any court proceedings will be made by the Court or under its direction unless the presiding judge, in his or her discretion, decides otherwise. If any party desires a recording of any court proceedings, it is the sole responsibility of that party to make any and all suitable arrangements for any such recording. If any party does intend to record any court proceedings, reasonable notice of that party's intent to record court proceedings must be provided to the presiding judge and the opposing party. 

Visual/Audio Aids - Display of Evidence

Any party who desires to use visual/audio aids and/or display evidence during court proceedings has the sole responsibility for securing and providing any and all equipment deemed necessary to use any visual or audio aids and/or to display any anticipated evidence to the Court or a jury. No party should in any way rely upon the Court or the Court Clerk's office to provide any needed equipment. 

 

Media Access

As a general rule, broadcast media will not be allowed to record any court proceeding.  Any exceptions may be made by the Judge presiding in each particular case.

Code

Motions for new trials and appeals are governed by the Texas Government Code, Section 30.00014, et seq.  An appeal bond is required to perfect an appeal from the Municipal Court.  All appeal bonds require the signature and address of the defendant.  An appeal bond must be approved by the Court and must be filed not later than the tenth (10th) day after the date on which the motion for new trial is overruled.  Appeal bonds shall comply with Chapter 45 of the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure.

Indigency

If a defendant is indigent or otherwise too poor to pay the appeal bond, he/she may file an Affidavit of Indigency with the Court and a Motion to Waive Costs within the ten (10) day period to file an appeal bond.  A hearing on the motion to waive costs shall then be scheduled by the Court.

Inability to Pay Fine

If  a defendant does not appeal the Court's decision, but is unable to pay the fine when due, the defendant must appear at the clerk's office and speak to the collections department.

Warrant

If a defendant does not pay the assessed fine and court costs/fees, meet all obligations of a payment plan or deferred disposition, or discharge the assessed fine and court costs/fees  by performing all services as ordered by the Court, a capias or warrant may be issued which will subject the defendant to arrest.