Can the City Attorney's Office represent private citizens who do not have funds to hire a private attorney?
No, the City Attorney's Office may not represent individuals in private legal matters. The City Attorney's client is St. George City Corporation as a municipal government, not individual members of the public.
There are many ways to find a lawyer to represent you. One, you may want to consider, is the lawyer referral service named LegalMatch (www.utahbar.org and click on "Find a lawyer" or 1-866-678-5342). The City does not endorse LegalMatch and provides this information solely as a convenience to you.
Should I report possible crimes to the City Attorney's Office?
No. Reports of possible crimes should be made to the St. George City Police Department, (435) 627-4301, 265 N. 200 E. St. George, UT 84770.
Should I report possible City code violations to the City Attorney's office?
Yes. Reports of possible building, housing or zoning code violations should be made to the St. George Code Enforcement, (435) 627-4450 (Jeff) or (435) 627-4429 (Malcolm), 175 E. 200 N. St. George, UT 84770.
Can I speak with a Prosecuting Attorney before I come to Court?
Do you have a court appointed attorney or have hired an attorney?
If so, your lawyer represents you. The prosecutor represents the St. George City. It would be unethical for the prosecutor to speak directly with you about any situation regarding your case. For your protection, the prosecution isn't allowed to talk to you without your attorney present. Whatever you need to communicate to the prosecutor can be done by your attorney.
Are you a defendant?
If you are a defendant with a traffic ticket, it is necessary to wait for the Pre-Trial date issued by the Court before speaking to a Prosecuting Attorney.
If I am the parent of a Defendant, can I speak to the Prosecuting Attorney?
That depends. If the Defendant over the age of 18 (as of today's date) and graduated from High School then No. Your son and/or daughter are of legal age and the prosecutor can only speak to them or their attorney regarding their allegations.
If the Defendant is currently 18 years old or younger and still in High School then the prosecuting attorney may speak to the parents as long as the Defendant is on the phone with them.
What is an arraignment?
This is the first court appearance for any traffic or other municipal code violation. At this hearing, the Municipal Court Judge will hear all cases scheduled for that day's docket. Defendants appearing that day will be advised of their rights and given the opportunity to plead guilty or not guilty. Those entering guilty pleas will be assessed court fees and fines, pay for any damages caused by their actions, and their case will be at an end.
Those entering not guilty pleas will be assigned another court date for a Pre-trial of their case. The Pre-Trial is the first opportunity the Defendant has to discuss their case with a Prosecuting Attorney.
Do I need to bring an attorney with me to my arraignment?
That is your decision. If you have a question or concern, a private attorney should be contacted. The City Attorney cannot provide legal advice and that decision is left to your discretion.
What is a pretrial conference?
A pretrial conference is a meeting between a Prosecuting Attorney and a defendant and/or his/her attorney to discuss the case and the possibility of a plea agreement or resolution.
What is a disposition?
A disposition is a final resolution of a case. You must appear in Court before the Judge. It may include an agreed upon plea and sentence negotiated between a Prosecuting Attorney and a Defendant. All dispositions must be approved by a Judge in open court.
If I Have Been Subpoenaed to Testify, Do I Have to Go?
A subpoena is actually a court order telling you to appear at a legal proceeding, so you must appear at the place and time designated on the subpoena. If you fail to appear as ordered by the subpoena, you may be found in contempt of court and sanctioned with jail time and fines.
What Can I Do If I Really Cannot Appear at the Time Designated by the Subpoena?
You may contact the attorney issuing the subpoena by phone or in a written letter requesting the City to file a motion to continue with the court to reschedule the hearing. There are narrow deadlines for filing a continuance with the court so please be mindful that it could take several weeks to process.
Disclaimer: Although the City tries to accommodate victims and witnesses in criminal proceedings, requesting a continuance is left to the discretion of the Prosecutor and your request may be denied.
What is the function of the Victim-Advocate?
The Victim Services Division of the Police Department has been extremely active assisting the victims of domestic violence and other criminal related charges. They are the victim's advocate through the court process helping the victims to have a voice, informing them of their rights, especially the right to assist in how the defendant will be sentenced.
If you are a victim of a crime in the city of St. George or have any questions regarding the Victim Services unit, you can reach them Monday through Friday, 8:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M. at (435) 627-4399. If you are calling outside of regular business hours, please leave your name and number and someone will return your call during the next business day.
You may also email: email@example.com.
Many citizens believe that the City Attorney serves as the attorney for the community rather than a Municipal Corporation. The City Attorney is the attorney for St. George City, as an entity. Because of the nature of the City Attorney's role, we cannot represent or provide legal advice to individual citizens, groups or other entities. We are therefore unable to respond to individual requests for legal advice or representation.