This information is designed to assist adult defendants who choose to represent themselves in a jury trial in Erie Municipal Court. It is a general overview of trial procedures. It by no means covers all situations that may arise during the course of a jury trial. It is intended to assist in the preparation and orderly presentation of evidence at the jury trial.
Note: There is a mandatory written jury demand form and a $25 jury fee, which must both be filed with the court within 20 days of the entry of your plea of not guilty in order to preserve your right to a jury trial. If both the demand and the $25 are not tendered within the 20 days, you will waive your right to a trial by jury.
Your case will be called by the judge, and the judge will inquire if you are ready to proceed to trial. If you have any witnesses that you feel will be necessary to testify at the trial, you will be required to have them in attendance. If a potential witness advises you that they are unavailable, you may subpoena them to your trial.
You must obtain a subpoena, issued by the court, well in advance of your trial date and have your witness served at least 48 hours prior to your time of trial, by another person who is not a party to your case and is over the age of 18 years. You must then file a return of service with the court showing that your witness was personally served.