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County Criminal Division F Procedures

Attorneys, at all times, shall conduct themselves consistent with the Guidelines for Professional Conduct and abide by the requirements of Administrative Order 2012-008.

Due to the disparity of practices amid procedures in the various courtrooms within the Criminal Division of the County Court, and in an effort to promote uniformity, consistency and professionalism within the division, the Court hereby enters this Pretrial Order, which shall, consistent with the Florida Rules of Criminal Procedure, govern the manner and methods by which attorneys shall practice in this Court. For good cause shown, this Court may modify or waive these procedures on an individual basis.

SCHEDULING: To schedule a hearing, please email the JA at You must have both Attorneys copied on the email. Please put the case number in the subject line and include the motion that needs to be heard.

NOTICES OF HEARING: Contact JA by email copying all parties/counsel for dates. When date is agreed to and the JA responds to the email, you have 48 HOURS to file your Notice of Hearing. If the Notice of Hearing is not filed within 48 hours, the date will no longer be available.

MOTIONS: All pretrial motions shall be in writing and heard prior to the date of the pretrial conference, except where otherwise specified. Motions can be set for a hearing by contacting 
Judge Baggé Hernández, Judicial Assistant, Yolanda C DeVesta, at

After filing a motion, the moving party shall contact opposing counsel to determine if the matter can be resolved by a stipulated order. After discussing the matter with opposing counsel, if a stipulation cannot be obtained, the moving attorney shall email the Judicial Assistant, requesting a hearing time, along with a copy of the motion. No motion, other than a legitimate emergency motion, will be set for a hearing unless the motion is electronically filed with the clerk prior to contacting the Judicial Assistant for a hearing date and time. Please include the case number and defendant’s name in the subject line when requesting a court date. 

All pretrial motions to suppress, motions in limine requiring evidentiary hearings, and motions to exclude shall be filed and served upon opposing counsel at least 14 days prior to the hearing date. All cases, statutes, rules or other citations of authority a party wishes the Court to consider should be provided to the Court at least two business days prior to the hearing on the motion.

Discovery Motions and Motions in Limine: All motions in limine and all motions pertaining to discovery disputes shall contain a statement by the moving party that good faith attempt to resolve the matter without Court involvement has been made and shall describe the manner in which the attempt was made. Motions to compel discovery should be filed within 10 days after the discovery is due. Motions to Compel More Adequate Responses to Discovery should be filed within 10 days of receipt of the alleged incomplete discovery. 

ARRAIGNMENTS: Any case set for arraignment in which a Notice of Appearance has been filed by private counsel will be set for a disposition hearing if a Waiver of Speedy Trial is also filed. If a Waiver of Speedy Trial is not filed with a Notice of Appearance, the case will be automatically set for pretrial conference and a trial date. Unrepresented defendants who are not in custody will appear in court personally.

DISPOSITIONS: Attorneys and their client(s) are expected to attend disposition hearings. If the cases are not being resolved, attorneys have the option to ask for a new date in court or complete the continuance form for a new disposition or trial date. Attorneys who are not on the disposition form blast list may contact the Judicial Assistant and request to be put on the list in order to receive a form by email.

PRETRIAL: The defendant is required to appear at all Pretrial Conference hearings, unless a written waiver has been previously filed with the court, or a warrant may be issued for the defendant. In certain circumstances, the Court may waive the appearance of the defendant without a waiver, but this is on a case by case basis. 

PLEAS: ALL PLEAS ARE IN PERSON, UNLESS A PLEA IN ABSENTIA HAS BEEN PREVIOUSLY APPROVED BY THE COURT. Negotiated pleas should be conveyed to, and fully discussed with, the defendant prior to announcing the plea in Court. Such discussion should include the minimum and maximum penalties and the issues covered in Rule 3.172. If counsel wishes to address the Court on any issue regarding the plea, this should be done at the time the plea is first announced, not after the plea colloquy has been concluded.

A written plea in absentia must be presented to the court that comports with the requirements of Florida Rule of Criminal Procedure 3.172. If a plea being entered is for an enhanceable offense, the written colloquy must include an acknowledgement that the defendant has been advised of the enhancement ramifications for said offense should the defendant reoffend in the future for that offense. PIAs for any enhanceable offenses, and in any case in which the defendant is being placed on probation, must include, in addition to the plea forms: full fingerprints and a written waiver of appearance in court. 

TRIAL: This Court expects all parties to be prepared and ready for trial on the morning of the trial date. Defendants who are late to court on trial morning should expect a warrant to be issued. All objections made during trial or any other evidentiary proceeding shall be supported by specific statutory authority or case law shall be provided, if requested by the Court, at the time of the objection.

All exhibits that an attorney intends to introduce as evidence during any trial or other proceeding shall be pre-marked by the Clerk prior to the time the trial or proceeding is scheduled to begin. No hearing or trial shall be delayed or continued beyond the scheduled starting time because an attorney needs to confer with a witness or review evidence with a witness.