This information is only important if the writers agree to a court case.
To file a case in Eldhin
- In order for one to file a case, all that is needed is to obtain ("hire") an attorney. (Right now there are two attorneys GOC's on Eldhin: Veronica-DA (District Attorney)-Played by Calli, and Lydia-PD (Public Defender)- played by Kimber.
- The District Attorney (for all intents and purposes) is the Prosecution (The one bringing the charges to court). Generally works on behalf of the county, city, or state. The Public Defender is (for all intents and purposes) the Defense (the one defending themselves against the prosecution). Public defenders generally are the "court appointed attorneys".
- Once an attorney has been obtained you must present your evidence to the attorney and present your case. The DA then sends notification of charges being brought up to the PD. They will then fill out a form (The DA fills out first) detailing the case and the charges. A copy of the form is sent to the PD (Public Defender) and to the courts. The PD fills out a form on her client(s) behalf as to the "answer" (the answer or explination (pleading case) to the prosecution's charges). A copy is sent back to the DA, and a copy is sent to the courts.
- The judge will then read both documents and inform both the PD and the DA of a tentative hearing date (docket or docket call).
- The PD and DA will then inform their clients of the date.
- The PD and DA go about gathering evidence, getting statements, seeking out witnesses, etc. Evidence, statements, witnesses, etc. MUST be made known to the opposite side or the evidence, etc cannot be used.
- From here the PD and DA need to decide on whether or not a continuance is needed or desired. A continuance is filed if either side needs more time to round out the case. There is a limit of one (1) continuance that can be filed. This comtinuance is given.
- The PD and DA can meet outside of court with their clients to work out a deal. If both parties agree to the deal all that is needed to be done is for the PD and DA (with or without their clients) to go before the judge to let the judge know that a deal had been made. 99.9% of the time the judge will uphold the deal made.
- The DA also has the choice of dropping charges for whatever reason at anytime before or during the trial/hearing. 100% of the time the judge will adhere to this as well.
- The DA can file multiple charges to be heard in the same case. Example: Bob is being accused of criminal tresspassing, assault with a deadly weapon, rape and murder. Only one case needs to be filed, not 4.
Inside the courtroom
- While inside the courtroom the judge demands respect. If the judge feels he is not being respected he has the option of placing the "offender" in contempt of court, dropping the case, or declaring a mistrial. Contempt can either be fines or minimal jail time (usually 2 hours but not more than 24 hours). Dropping the case and mistrial are basically the same thing with one difference. On Eldhin, a mistrial can be refiled after 30 days. A case can only be refiled once.
- There are certain respects that must also be given to anyone on the stand. No badgering the witness, no leading the witness, the attorney must ask a question rather than make statements, the line of questioning must be relevent, etc (please see below for a descrption of "court terms" used in Eldhin.)
- Once all of the evidence has been presented and all of the witness have been called, the judge will open the floor for the attorneys to present closing arguments in turn. The closing argument is where the attorney sums up the case and then makes a "plea to the court" as to why the defendant is guilty or not guilty.
- Both the DA and the PD are given the opportunity to question the witness. The one who's turn it is to cross examine has the option of waiting until a later time to cross examine or not cross examine at all. The PD and DA also have the option to redirect.(Again, please see below for a list of terms.)
- The judge has the final call. What ever the judge's decision it stands. "No one can be charged or tried for the same crime twice." This is to say that if Bob is found not guilty, the DA cannot bring up charges against Bob for the same thing. Bob can be, however, be charged for the same thing but involving another person. Example. Bob is found innocent of murder charges. He leaves the court house and proceeds to kill someone else. The DA can now bring up seperate murder charges against Bob for killing the person when he left the courthouse.
Objections and responses
- Badgering-When an attorney is being argumentative and overly harsh to a witness. Usually happens during cross examination.
- Leading- Using keywords or certain words to lead the witness where the attorney wants them to go.
- Stating not questioning- The attorney must ask questions and not make statements
- Relevance (objection)- Leading to relevance (reaction)
- Witness not answering the question (this objection usually occurs from the attorney questioning at that time and usually during cross examination. All the attorneys need is the witness to give a yes or no answer they don't need an explination and usually during cross examinantion is when the attorney will only want a yes or no answer. ;)
- Flammatory statements- Neither the attorneys nor the witnesses shall make flammatory and derogatory remarks about witnesses, judges, or anyone in the court.
- Hearsay- No testimony is admissable if it does not come directly from the person themself. "He/She told me he/she said..." "I heard him/her say...." etc.
- Spectulation- No attorney or witness shall speculate as to what they think is going through someone else's head. "He/She was thinking....." "I think he/she was thinking/wanting...." etc.
Terms and Lingo in the courtroom
- Contempt or Contempt of Court- Usually called when anyone in the judge's courtroom (including attorneys) get out of order. Can result in fines or minimal jail time (usually no less than two (2) hours and no more than 24 hours).
- Cross examine- When the opposing side's attorney questions the witness.
- Hostile Witness- A witness called by the opposing side. Bob is a witness for the defense. The DA can call bob as a hostile witness. This is a very tricky move and usually only the most seasoned attorneys will use this tactic.
- Order- What the judge usually says to settle his courtroom down.
- Questioning- When the attorneys question the person on the stand. The attorney for the witness on the stand goes first.
- Redirect- When the attorney of the witness on the stand wants to ask questions after the cross examination. This is usually used to clarify something the witness said during cross examination.
- Subpoena- A written order delivered by a court official ordering the recipient into court. A subpoena cannot be ignored. If a subpoena is ignored jail time can be administered with no trial. A subpoena is generally only delivered to those who refuse to go to court or (and this is the most common) for professionals who require documentation as proof.
- Witness- The person on the stand being questioned