Ohio OVI Law: What is an Arraignment?
The first hearing in an Ohio DUI case is the arraignment. Ohio arraignments are governed by Rule 8 of the Ohio Traffic Rules (Traf. R. 8). The purpose of the arraignment is to assure that the accused is aware of the charges against him or her, and that the accused is made aware of his or her rights. (Traf. R. 8(B)) At this hearing, the court will, in open court, read the charge and ask the defendant to enter a plea. Prior to asking for a plea the arraigning judge must be satisfied that the accused understands (1) the right to counsel, (2) the right to bail, (3) that the accused need not make any statement and that any statment he or she does make may be used against them, (4) the right to a jury trial, and (5) that a conviction will result in a record being sent to the BMV and become a part of his or her permanent driving record. (Traf. R. 8(D)).
In most courts, an attorney is permitted to file papers with the court announcing his representation of the defendant, thereby vacating the need for a formal in-court arraignment. Ask your DUI attorney if your attendance at the arraignment will be required. If you do attend, the arraignment will be a very quick process wherein your attorney leads you to a podium, waives reading of the charge and enters a not guilty plea on your behalf. Matters of bond may, or may not be addressed at an arraignment. It is not common for your defense attorney to see the prosecutor who will handle your case and reach a resolution at the arraignment. Usually, issues of discovery and plea negotiations will take place later at the pre-trial hearing.
Some people have preconceived notions about the arraignment. For instance, some clients believe that it will be held against them if they do not attend the hearing. I have never heard of this being the case. If the court wishes for the defendant to attend, it will become part of the court rules. Other clients think that the press will be present. This is usually not the case and your attorney will be able to tell you if such press coverage could be expected. Still other clients think that the judge will be rude, harsh or judgmental from the bench during the arraignment. Again, this will rarely if ever happen.
The following local municipal courts do not require that the accused attend the arraignment if they have obtained counsel and proper paperwork has been filed: Dayton Municpal Court, Montgomery County Municipal Court, Eastern Division, Montgomery County Municipal Court, Western Division, Vandalia Municipal Court, Miamisburg Municipal Court, Kettering Municipal Court, Oakwood Municipal Court, Fairborn Municipal Court (including Beavercreek), Xenia Municipal Court, Miami County Municipal Court, Eaton Municipal Court, Madison County Municipal Court, Washington Court House Municipal Court and the Clark County Municipal Court. If you are to appear in Common Pleas Court you will be required to attend the arraignment. Please speak to DUI lawyer Charles M. Rowland II as all of these court rules are subject to change.
If you find yourself facing an OVI charge in the Miami Valley, please contact OVI attorney Charles M. Rowland II for a free initial consultation. Call (937)318-1DUI [318-1384] or 1-888-ROWLAND [888-769-5263]. You can follow us on facebook [www.facebook.com/daytondui] and on Twitter @DaytonDUI or receive text updates on developing issues in DUI law by signing up for text alerts on this blog. “All I do is DUI defense.”
- Miami Valley Municipal Court Finder (daytondui.com)
- Fairborn Municipal Court, case look-up (daytondui.com)
- Huber Heights OVI Cases Are Heard In The Montgomery County Municipal Court (Eastern Division) (daytondui.com)