Crimes and Criminal Procedure
Procedure in Particular Courts
CHAPTER 53. Court of Common Pleas
(a) The accused shall have the right to trial by petit jury in all criminal cases except as otherwise provided by statute.
(b) The Court shall have the power to receive pleas of guilty from persons charged with misdemeanors and to impose sentence or probation according to law, as fully as is now done by the Superior Court.
(c) From any order, rule, decision, judgment or sentence of the Court in a criminal action, the accused shall have the right of appeal to the Superior Court in and for the county wherein the information was filed as provided in § 28, article IV of the Constitution of the State. Such appeal to the Superior Court shall be reviewed on the record and shall not be tried de novo.11 Del. C. 1953, § 5301; 59 Del. Laws, c. 133, § 3; 69 Del. Laws, c. 421, § 1;
The Judges of the Court, or a majority of them, may, from time to time, adopt and promulgate general rules which prescribe and regulate the form and manner of process, pleading, practice and procedure governing criminal proceedings in the Court from inception to termination.11 Del. C. 1953, § 5302; 59 Del. Laws, c. 133, § 3;
The accused in all criminal cases in which there is a possibility that a period of incarceration may be imposed or the maximum fine is $100 or more where a justice of the peace or alderman or mayor of any incorporated city or town, except the City of Newark, in the county where the charge is brought has jurisdiction and power to hear and finally determine the matter, may elect at any time prior to day of trial to have the case tried by the Court. If an offense or criminal case within the exclusive jurisdiction of a justice of the peace or alderman or mayor of any incorporated city or town, except the City of Newark, is or may be joined properly with a criminal case or other offense that is within the jurisdiction of the Court and has been transferred upon the accused’s election pursuant to this section, such criminal case shall be within the jurisdiction of the Court.11 Del. C. 1953, § 5303; 59 Del. Laws, c. 133, § 3; 61 Del. Laws, c. 207, § 1; 63 Del. Laws, c. 398, § 1; 78 Del. Laws, c. 207, §§ 1, 2;
(a) The Court may punish contempt and may issue all process necessary for the exercise of its criminal jurisdiction, which process may be executed in any part of the State.
(b) The Court, in the exercise of its criminal jurisdiction, may issue subpoenas and other warrants into any county in the State for summoning or bringing any person to give evidence in any matter triable before it and may enforce obedience by fine or imprisonment. Such subpoenas and warrants shall be in such form as may be prescribed by the Rules of the Court.11 Del. C. 1953, § 5304; 59 Del. Laws, c. 133, § 3; 73 Del. Laws, c. 130, § 1;
(a) In all those cases where, by § 5303 of this title, the accused may elect to be tried by the Court, if the accused elects to be tried by the Court, the justice of the peace shall hold such accused under sufficient bail for a hearing or for accused’s appearance at the Court where the matter shall proceed as though originating in the Court by information filed.
(b) In default of bail, the person accused shall be committed to the custody of the Department of Correction to await the session of the Court.11 Del. C. 1953, § 5305; 59 Del. Laws, c. 133, § 3; 70 Del. Laws, c. 186, § 1; 80 Del. Laws, c. 51, § 3;
(a) The witnesses attending the Court in criminal cases shall receive the same fees as in the Superior Court.
(b) In criminal cases witness fees shall be taxed as part of the costs of such proceeding.11 Del. C. 1953, § 5306; 59 Del. Laws, c. 133, § 3;
Any public officer or employee, in any criminal action against such officer or employee arising from the officer’s or employee’s state employment, shall be entitled to petition the Court for a Court-appointed attorney to represent the officer’s or employee’s interests in the matter. If the Judge, after consideration of the petition, examination of the petitioner and receipt of such further evidence as the Judge may require, determines that the petition has merit, the Judge shall appoint an attorney to represent the interests of such public officer or employee. The Court-appointed attorney shall represent such person at all stages, trial and appellate, until the final determination of the matter, unless the attorney is earlier released by such person or by the Court. In any action where the Court-appointed attorney has been appointed in the Court of Common Pleas, such attorney shall remain the Court-appointed attorney of said public official or employee even when the case is transferred for any reason to another court of this State. This section shall also apply to all federal courts within this State.60 Del. Laws, c. 474, § 3; 60 Del. Laws, c. 676, § 3; 70 Del. Laws, c. 186, § 1;
A Court of Common Pleas Judge shall conduct a preliminary hearing in accordance with the rules of criminal procedure promulgated by the Court of Common Pleas.61 Del. Laws, c. 348, § 1;