Thanks for the information.
If the ticket indicates that you must appear on November 11, 2011 then YOU MUST APPEAR on that date and at the time indicated. If you don't the judge will issue a warrant for your arrest for your failure to appear for your court date. The ticket, itself, basically begins the court proceedings. Even if the ticket is not yet entered into the system, you can make a record before the judge that you DID appear as directed. You should take your copy of the ticket with you to court. If for some reason it hasn't been entered into the system yet, the clerks will be able to track it down. It may be that the violation has not made it from the police department to the court for entry into the computer.
If the court can't seem to find the violation, you can certainly ask the judge to dismiss the case. However it is HIGHLY UNLIKELY that a dismissal will occur.
Your first appearance before a judge will be your arraignment. You will be read the formal charges against you, the possible maximum penalties, and s/he will read you your constitutional rights--including your right to an attorney. If you can't afford an attorney, you can ask the judge to appoint you a public defender.
At your arraignment, you should plead NOT GUILTY. If you can't afford an attorney, then at that time, you can ask for a public defender.
In the meantime, before your November court date, you may wish to contact an attorney who specializes in DUI/criminal law in the area in which you received the ticket. Sometimes, an initial consultation is free or at a minimal cost. You can discuss the specific facts of your case, evaluate your options and decide how to proceed. You can gain valuable information from that first visit, even if you can't afford to hire the attorney.
Again, YOU MUST APPEAR on your court date. If you do not, a warrant will be issued for your arrest for failure to appear. It is highly unlikely that the case will be dismissed if it hasn't made it into the court's computer system by your court date. However, you can certainly ask. Also, take a copy of your ticket with you to court. Finally, seek an initial consultation of a DUI attorney in your area. And, if you can't afford a lawyer, you can ask for a public defender.
A DUI conviction has far reaching consequences. Your license will be suspended/restricted, your insurance rates will skyrocket and it is considered a criminal conviction. A lawyer may be able to negotiate a plea bargain or even a dismissal if it is appropriate to do so.
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