Do I need to have an attorney represent me?
You may have an attorney represent you at trial if you wish but you are not required to have one.
Can I bring in statements from witnesses to present to the court?
The court will not consider affidavits or other written statements in lieu of a witness’ appearance at trial. If you want the court to hear from a witness he or she must be present.
How do I get a witness to come to court?
If you want a witness to come to court, and they refuse to come voluntarily, several days prior to trial you must ask the court to issue a subpoena compelling appearance.
Can I ask the City for certain information that I will need for trial?
If you think that the City of Cleveland Heights has certain information in its possession that you will need to use at trial, you must make a discovery request for that information under Rule 16 of the Criminal Rules of Procedure, prior to trial.
What if I cannot come to court on the day scheduled for trial?
If you cannot appear on the day scheduled for trial you must file a Motion for Continuance at least three working days in advance of the trial date. However, you must appear for trial on the day scheduled if the court does not notify you that it has granted your request.
Generally a person may testify to facts about which she or he has firsthand knowledge. In other words, they can testify about things they actually saw or heard.
You may, but are not required to, take the stand and testify on your own behalf. If you do so without a lawyer you do not have to ask yourself questions but may testify in narrative form.
You cannot read from a prepared statement on the stand.
If you want to use a photograph or other physical evidence (such as a document) you must fully identify the object introduced and tell the court how and when you obtained it. You must supply the court with enough information for it to determine whether that evidence is what it purports to be and if it accurately represents what it claims to depict.
The court may refuse to hear certain testimony or review certain physical evidence based upon the Rules of Evidence. While the court will generally explain the reason for its refusal it will be impossible for the court to fully apprise you of the sum and substance of the evidentiary rules at trial.