A Clerk Magistrate's Hearing is one of the very best ways to resolve a criminal matter prior to a formal arraignment.
In Massachusetts, a defendant has the right to a Clerk Magistrate Hearing for most misdemeanors that did not occur in police presence.
The purpose of such a hearing is for the clerk magistrate to examine the facts surrounding the case and determine if there is probable cause to issue a criminal complaint.
In most cases a Police Prosecutor will appear and read a police report or describe what happened. Witnesses may be called to offer additional testimony. You or your Attorney can also give your version of events surrounding a particular incident.
Once all of the evidence and testimony has been presented, the clerk magistrate will decide if there is probable cause to support the charges and if he or she believes you should be charged. If so, a complaint will be issued against you.
In some cases, particularly if a defendant has a limited (or no) prior criminal record, the clerk magistrate may generally continue the matter. That means a clerks may hold the case open for a period of time to see if there are any repeat incidents. At the end of the stated period of time the clerk will then enter a formal result of no probable cause and the complaint will not issue.
Call Attorney Bradley to schedule a free consultation and case evaluation today. All matters discussed are protected by the Attorney-Client privilege and are strictly confidential!