When a person is charged with a felony offense by way of an Information, he or she has a Constitutional right to have a Preliminary Hearing.
A Preliminary Hearing is a hearing for the State of Oklahoma to show probable cause that a felony was committed and that the defendant committed the crime.
Probable cause is a much lower burden than what is required at trial, which requires beyond a reasonable doubt.
The State will call witnesses and the Defendant has the right to cross-examine those witnesses.
At the conclusion of the hearing, the judge will hear demurrer arguments and then determine if there is probable cause to bind the case over for trial. If the State does not meet its burden of probable cause, then the judge will order the felony charge(s) dismissed. However, at this stage the court is to take all evidence in the light most favorable to the State and there is the presumption that the State’s case will strengthen as it goes to trial.
Have you or a loved one recently been charged with a criminal matter in Tulsa or surrounding counties?
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