Asked in Criminal Law and Legal Malpractice for Washington

Q: What would be my next step after a judge refused to properly inform me of all the elements in my charge?

I went to my arrangement and asked the judge if the court we were in recognized the constitution and she stated "yes". I then asked "under which jurisdiction did the Court Plan to charge me under". And she blatantly said "I can't tell you that, you need to get a public defender". To which I stated "actually your honor it is Your lawful duty to properly inform me of all the elements in my case. And jurisdiction is one of those elements". She angrily stated "Washington state jurisdiction". And I said "I'm sorry but that's not a jurisdiction that is recognized by the constitution and since you said this court does in fact follow the constitution. It needs to be recognised by it". She again stated I need to get a public defender which I said " I'm not seeking Legal advice , I'm seeking legal intent" She basically ignored me and told me to get a attorney or public Defender. And I don't want either what can I do here.

1 Lawyer Answer
Jennifer Melissa Azure
Jennifer Melissa Azure
  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Kennewick, WA
  • Licensed in Washington

A: Understanding you do not wish to have an attorney represent you, based upon your question I would recommend your next step be to speak with an attorney to explain the process. The Court has not charged you with a crime, the prosecution has.

The Court is required to advise defendants of their rights at arraignment, ensure that the true name and date of birth are provided and go through the elements of the crime - which usually will name either the City or the County and in the State of Washington. You may have received a copy of the charging documents which should allege the elements of the charged crime, including jurisdiction.

It is unclear what you mean by your statement that you are "not seeking legal advice, I'm seeking legal intent". If you weren't looking for legal advice you would not be on here asking questions about how to proceed next. There may be an issue with your case, but I would suggest you contact an attorney in your jurisdiction or county to fully discuss and review the discovery.

Best of luck to you, Jennifer

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