The Criminal Division of the Jackson County State’s Attorney’s Office has the responsibility to prosecute all felony and misdemeanor cases. We hold criminals accountable and ensure that the rights of the victims are honored and respected throughout the process. In the courtroom, we provide the highest quality legal representation for the community and seek justice in each and every case. The prosecutor’s “client” is the people of Jackson County.
The attorneys, paralegals, legal secretaries, and other associated support staff in the criminal division are committed to providing justice for victims and witnesses of crime in the most professional, respectful, and compassionate manner while ensuring that offenders are prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
In order to truly fulfill our mission to seek justice for all, our ethical obligations do not end once a conviction is secured. Seeking justice is not about conviction rates, or win-loss records, but seeing that the correct result occurs in every single case. It is critical that our office remain at the forefront of developing and implementing mechanisms that ensure the rightful administration of justice, safeguarding that the guilty are convicted and the innocent freed.
Every prosecutor in the Jackson County State’s Attorney’s Office is responsible for ensuring conviction integrity. This includes reviewing from a neutral standpoint cognizable claims of actual innocence, identifying systematic issues which can result in wrongful convictions, collaborating with relevant parties in the course of those reviews to determine if the correct results occurred, and assisting with developing best practices and procedures based on the most up to date information. These efforts facilitate prosecutors’ diligently and ethically fulfilling their responsibilities toward the rightful administration of justice.
Felony/Misdemeanor Flow Chart for Criminal Case
This is the first court proceeding for the defendant. The charges are read, and the defendant is advised of their rights. Bond is set and a public defender may be appointed.
Grand Jury (Felony Only):
This proceeding takes place instead of a preliminary hearing. This is a private proceeding without notification to the defendant; it is closed to the public. This is usually done with the investigation is still active.
Preliminary Hearing (Felony Only):
This is a probable cause heading for the judge to determine whether a crime was committed and if the defendant was involved. The police officer testifies, and hearsay is admissible. The defendant may waive the preliminary hearing.
This is when the defendant enters a formal plea, guilty or not guilty.
Case Management Conference (CMC):
Motions are filed and discovery is discussed.
Attorneys advise the judge if they are prepared for trial. Defendant may plead guilty or waive their right to a jury trial.
Prosecutors must prove the crime beyond a reasonable doubt. The defendant is found guilty or not guilty by the judge or a jury.
Penalties are imposed by the judge. If it is a violent crime case, the victims can present a Victim Impact Statement to the court.
It is not uncommon to have a case set for multiple case management conferences or pre-trials. Also, due to the volume of cases, trial date continuances are common! Always call before coming to the courthouse for court proceedings!
Many cases are held through video court due to COVID-19. The link for video court is listed below. Click on the Judge’s name on your notice at the time of your hearing.
Jackson County Video Court link.
1001 Walnut Street
Murphysboro, IL 62966
Hours of Operation
8am - 4pm
Monday through Friday
Closed on all Federal
and State holidays.