Trials

All trials are held in the Municipal Courtroom, 7341 Donna Drive, Middleton, WI 53562. Trials are held on Wednesday or Thursday nights and are digitally recorded.

You can represent yourself, or you can have an attorney appear with you and handle the presentation of your case. If you hire an attorney, you must pay for the attorney yourself.

You can testify yourself and you can present other witnesses. If you need assistance in issuing a subpoena to compel a witness to appear at the trial, you should call the Court at (608) 824-7370. You will have to personally serve the subpoenas on the witnesses. Please allow at least two weeks before the trial to obtain and serve the subpoenas. There is no charge for obtaining subpoenas, however, you may be required to pay witness fees plus their mileage.

If you wish to offer documents as part of the presentation of your case, you certainly can do so. Please bring copies for the Prosecutor and the Court.

The City of Middleton will present its case first. The City, through the City Prosecutor, must try to prove you are guilty of violating the ordinance indicated on the citation issued to you. The burden of proof that the City must meet is called clear, satisfactory and convincing evidence.

You have the opportunity to question all witnesses you call during the presentation of your case. That is called direct examination. Also, you can question all witnesses that the City presents as part of its case. That is called cross-examination. Closing arguments are permitted as well.

Usually, the Judge will render a decision the same night that the trial is held. Occasionally, the Judge will take the case under advisement and issue a written decision within 30 days of the trial date.

If the Judge determines the City failed to meet its burden of proof, the case will be dismissed. However, if the Judge determines the City satisfied its burden of proof, you will be found guilty. Then, the Judge will impose a sentence. Typically, the sentence will include a forfeiture of some amount. However, there may be other components of the sentence depending on the nature of your specific case, including such things as demerit points against your driver's license, suspension of your driver's license or restitution for damage to property.

It will be helpful if you think about your case prior to the trial date. You may want to make a list of questions you would like to ask witnesses. The judge will have no information about your case except what is presented at trial.