Welcome to the Elkhart Lake-Town of Rhine Municipal Court website.
Since most people are concerned about appearing in court, I offer the following rules and procedures to help you understand how the court functions. This court has jurisdiction over traffic and non-traffic ordinances in these municipalities. You have a right to be represented by an attorney, or you may proceed without one. If you want an attorney, you must retain one at your own expense. The court cannot provide you with a Public Defender, as this is a civil court not a criminal court.
This is a court of law and the rules for proper decorum, procedure, and evidence will be strictly adhered to!
You may enter one of the following pleas.
GUILTY- which is an admission of the charges against you. If I accept this plea, you will be found guilty of the charges as they appear on the citation and you will be sentenced.
NOT GUILTY- which is a denial of the charges against you. You are then given the opportunity to attend a pretrial conference with the Village/Town Prosecuting Attorney in an attempt to settle your case.
NO CONTEST- which means that you are neither admitting to the charges nor are you denying them.
IF YOU ARE IN DOUBT AS TO WHICH PLEA TO ENTER, I SUGGEST YOU PLEAD NOT GUILTY OR ASK FOR A CONTINUANCE SO YOU CAN REVIEW YOUR CASE AND MAKE AN INTELLIGENT PLEA AT THE ADJOURNED DATE!
If you are found guilty of a traffic offense, in addition to any judgment made by the court, the State Department of Transportation will access demerit points against your driving record, which may result in the suspension or revocation of your driver’s license. The assessment of twelve demerit points in one year shall result in the loss of your license. Any person holding a probationary license will be assessed double demerit points for the second and all subsequent violations.
This court has jurisdiction over children 12 through 16 years of age for violations of local ordinances, except underage alcohol includes persons 12 through 20. 17 year-olds accused of violating a municipal ordinance are treated as adults and 16 year-olds accused of violating a traffic offense are treated as adults. This court also has jurisdiction in matters involving truancy and habitual truancy for children between the ages of 16 and 18.
Any person who fails to conduct themselves in an orderly manner may be cited for contempt of court.
If there are any questions concerning procedures or rules that you wish answered, ask them when your case is called.
The Court is providing this information in an attempt to facilitate your appearance here. It is to serve as brief outline of the procedures and rules that apply to this court. Each defendant has other rights not necessarily explained here. You owe it to yourself to familiarize yourself with the procedures, rules, and your rights.
Judge Susan H Schleisner
Terese Shaw-Clerk of Municipal Court