A telephone call to the Court does not constitute an appearance.
Walking up to the Court cashier window and asking questions does not constitute an appearance.
Appearances can be made in two ways:
1. In person

2. By mail (fax, e-mail, and the drop-box are considered mail) There are some cases in which you cannot appear by mail and this will be explained below.
Please Read
An initial appearance on a citation (violation), on which you have NOT entered a plea, must be made by either yourself or your attorney. You cannot send a friend or family member to enter a plea for you and pay your citation.
The law requires that you appear in Court on your cases. If you were issued a citation, your appearance date and time is noted on the citation. If you were issued or mailed a summons, your appearance date and time is indicated in the summons. If you have been released on bond, you may call the Court office to schedule an appearance date or you (and your bondsman if applicable) will be mailed a bond hearing notice with your date and time to appear. In most circumstances you may appear by mail rather than in open Court.  We give everyone a ten (10) business day grace period when appearing by mail or in person to take care of a citation.  As stated previously, if you wish to appear in Court before the Judge, you MUST be on the Court docket. Walk ins will not be added to the Court session on the day of Court.
Circumstances in which you CANNOT appear by mail are:
You are a juvenile (10-16 years of age). All juveniles MUST appear in open Court on all violations with a parent or legal guardian pursuant to state law.

You are a minor (17-20) charged with an alcohol or tobacco related offense.

You have been mailed a Court summons ordering you to appear before the Judge for a show cause hearing, contempt hearing, indigent hearing, bond hearing, pre-trial hearing, or a trial, unless prior arrangements have been made with the Court.

You have received an official court summons or subpoena ORDERING you to appear in open Court, unless prior arrangements have been made with the Court.

 If you were cited for multiple violations or are already on a payment plan and/or deferred disposition with the Court, it is best to go ahead and appear before the Judge in open Court.
The Initial appearance
The first thing the Judge will ask you when you appear in open Court for the first time on a citation is how you want to plea to each violation you are charged with, this is called arraignment.
Failing to enter an appearance on your citation, either in person or by mail if applicable, will result in the issuance of a failure to appear or violate promise to appear and warrants for your arrest. 
Representing Yourself In Court
It is always best to have a lawyer. The law and court proceedings are complicated, and lawyers have legal training. A lawyer can help you understand your rights and options and help get the best result possible in your case. Sometimes even simple matters can have consequences that you are not aware of or do not understand.

If you are representing yourself in a case, or thinking about doing so, the following links may help you:

Court Dress Code

Court check in begins 30 minutes prior to the session time. Dress code is strictly enforced. Click the following link for Courtroom dress code and decorum (rules).
Defendants that arrive late or are not dressed appropriately will be rescheduled.

pdf Court Dress Code
pdf Courtroom Rules

Legal Advice

The Municipal Court cannot give legal advice of any nature.

Court personnel are allowed to explain Court proceedings and procedures regarding misdemeanor cases filed in this Court only.

 If you need legal advice, please contact an attorney.