PreTrial Conference This is an opportunity to settle your case which comes after the preliminary hearing in felony cases and in misdemeanors after the arraignment. The judge, DA and your attorney will disccuss your case in chambers. You do not directly participate and need not accept any deal offerred. Once this chance for early resolution has passed settlement becomes more difficult but not impossible. PreTrial Motions Your attorney will probably choose to file pretrial requests for relief that will be decided by te judge. These range anywhere from a request to lower bail, to a request to suppress evidence or dismiss the case. If the police have abused you in the process of the arrest, your attorney may choose to file a "Pitchess Motion" which if granted will allow him or her to examine the personnel files of the arresting officers; this information can be very useful on cross-examination. Trial In every case except for infractions you have a right to a full jury trial. Although most criminal cases are settled through plea bargaining, there may be a very good reason not to accept any deal offered by the DA. The best reason is actual innocence. Plea Bargaining You may decide it is best to accept a deal offered by a DA or judge than risk going to trial. Most cases are resolved this way. In any event, you should remember that it is your choice to accept a deal or not. Your attorney can only explain the offer to you. You have full authority at all times to say "no, I'd rather go to trial."