If you have been charged with operating a vehicle while intoxicated (OWI) in Wisconsin, you could face serious repercussions. However, if this is your first offense, you might be directed to the state’s trial court, or circuit court.
The circuit courts in Wisconsin are divided off into different branches. Each county has at least one branch, with the exception of six counties in the state that share judges. The largest circuit is Milwaukee County, which has fewer than 50 judges.
A first offense OWI charge in Wisconsin is considered a non-criminal traffic ticket. If you are working with an attorney, he or she will be able to handle most or all of the court appearances without your personal attendance required.
A jury must be requested at the beginning of the case. If no jury is requested, then the judge is the only one to hear the case. The case will typically follow the normal track of proceedings for a traffic ticket in that county. Each county can have its own practices, which may vary slightly from county to county.
Usually after the initial appearance, there is a pretrial conference where the attorney can discuss the case and negotiate a potential outcome. Then there is another court appearance to report to the judge the status of the case and request what needs to be scheduled next. If the case does not get resolved, then it would proceed to a motion hearing and jury trial.
At Tracey Wood & Associates, we are with you every step of the way, regardless of the details of your case. We understand that any legal proceeding can be frustrating, time consuming, and difficult, but it doesn’t have to be. We have had numerous cases similar to yours and have defended them with great success for our clients.
To learn more about how we can help you with your OWI charge and to schedule a free review of your case, contact us today.