DUI Cases in the Northampton County Court System
After your arrest, the court process begins.
Your first court date will be approximately 30 to 60 days after your arrest. You must appear in the local District Court in the township where you were arrested.
You will appear in front of a Magistrate Judge who will determine whether probable cause exists for the charges against you, and whether to send all or some of the charges to the Northampton County Court of Common Pleas, located at 669 Washington Street in Easton, Pennsylvania 18042.
At the Preliminary Hearing, you can challenge whether probable cause existed to believe that you were under the influence of alcohol or drugs at the time of your arrest. It is important to be represented by qualified DUI counsel at this stage of the proceedings, as it is possible that some or all of the charges can be dismissed or amended.
If the case proceeds beyond the District Court level, the matter will proceed to the County level.
If this is a first alleged offense, you may be eligible for ARD, or Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition, which will ultimately result in dismissal of the DUI charges against you if you successfully complete the program.
Qualified DUI counsel will seek the best ARD result for you under the circumstances of your case. Depending on your situation, it is possible that you can avoid loss of your driver's license. Please call us to discuss how this can happen.
If your matter proceeds to the Northampton County Court of Common Pleas, your case will be heard before a county judge and will be prosecuted by the Northampton County District Attorney's Office. Your first court date at the county level will be for Arraignment. That usually occurs within 60 days of the date of the Preliminary Hearing. At the Arraignment, you will enter a "not guilty" plea, and the "discovery" process will begin, where you will obtain police records and information about your arrest and testing issues.
Your lawyer will enter into plea negotiations with the District Attorney's office, and will discuss with you the best strategy for your case. Depending on the evidence against you, you have several options available. If the evidence against you is weak, you may elect to go to trial. If you choose not to go to trial, your lawyer will seek a favorable plea result for you.
Please contact us at 215-542-0800 to discuss how your case can proceed through the Northampton County Court System.