Explanations of Pleas


Guilty: A plea  by a defendant admitting that he committed the offense of crime charges. A guilty plea is a complete admission of guilt to the charge and a waiver of all rights. A guilty plea must be made with consent of the court.

Not Guilty: A plea where the defendant denies the charges against him. The burden remains on the city, state, or federal government to prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt.

No Contest:  A plea entered by a defendant that does not admit guilt, but that subjects the defendant to punishment, while allowing the defendant to deny the alleged facts in other proceedings. For purposes of sentancing a defendant, a plea of no contest is equivalent to a plea of guilty.However, a no contest plea differs from a guilty plea becasue it cannot be used against the defendant in other proceedings. A no contest plea must be made with the consent of the court.

Failure to Enter a Plea: If the defendant refuses to enter a plea or does not appear, the court must enter a plea of not guilty.


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