Felony Case Procedures

Felony Home Courts

Felony cases are heard in Departments 1 & 2 of the Superior Court of California, County of Shasta.  Department 1 & 2 are located at 1655 West Street in Redding, California. 


Formal criminal proceedings commence in Superior Court with an arraignment.  During arraignment the judge will advise the accused of the charges filed by the District Attorney, explain the constitutional rights involved, address bail, and appoint counsel in the event the accused qualifies for the services of the Public Defender.

A Deputy Public Defender will quickly assess the circumstances and, where appropriate, make a request for release or the setting of reasonable bail.  Upon entering a plea, the Deputy Public Defender will schedule future court appearances.

Plea Disposition

The plea disposition conference is a court appearance in which your attorney discusses the matter with the judge and Deputy District Attorney.  By the plea disposition conference, you should have met with your attorney and you should be prepared to make decisions in your case. 

Preliminary Hearing

The preliminary hearing typically occurs the day following the plea disposition conference.  The prosecution must prove a crime was committed and you were the person that committed the crime.  The judge will decide whether the evidence supports each of the charges alleged in the complaint.  In the event the judge finds sufficient evidence, the court will issue a holding order, binding the case over for trial.  If the court finds the evidence insufficient to support the alleged offenses, the judge will discharge the allegations.

Arraignment on Information

In the event the judge finds sufficient evidence to support the charges at the preliminary examination, you will be arraigned on an information.  The information is similar to the complaint because it notifies you of the charges alleged against you.  Your attorney will enter a plea on your behalf and the judge will schedule future court appearances.

Settlement Conference

The settlement conference is an opportunity for you, your attorney, and the deputy district attorney to reach an agreement in the case.  Your Deputy Public Defender will present your case and negotiate on your behalf.  Whenever negotiations are unsuccessful, the case proceeds to jury trial.

Trial Readiness Conference

The trial readiness conference is scheduled for a Friday at 8:15 a.m.  You should be present at 8:00 a.m. or sooner in order to be prepared when the judge calls the case.  At the trial readiness conference, the parties will have one more opportunity to resolve the case without proceeding to jury trial.  In the event the case fails to resolve, your attorney will confirm the case for trial.

Trial Assignment Calendar

The trial assignment calendar occurs on the same Friday as the Trial Readiness Conference and starts at 10:00 a.m.  The judge will assign the case to a trial department for the following Tuesday. 

Jury Trial

Typically, jury trials begin on a Tuesday and continue until completed.  Jury trials take place Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday.  During jury trials, court begins at 8:45 a.m. and ends at 4:30 p.m.  In the event the jury finds you not guilty of the offenses charged, the case will terminate.  However, if the jury finds you guilty of a felony offense, the case will be referred to the probation department to complete a presentence investigation report.

Judgment & Sentencing

Judgment & Sentencing takes place after a plea of guilty or no contest or a guilty verdict is rendered by a jury.  The judge will consider evidence presented by your attorney, the District Attorney, and Probation Department to determine the appropriate sentence.