do not happen on the first court appearance. The first court date, he will ask for a public defender if he has not done so beforehand.
The first court date is to allow the judge to inform the defendant of the charges and possible maximum sentences
if the defendant is convicted of all charges. The first court date also allows the defendant to enter a plea. The plea should almost always be "not guilty" on that first appearance. And, the defendant should generally demand a jury trial.
Trials are actually fairly rare in the justice
system. Only a small percentage of cases go to trial. Most are plea bargained. That means that the defense attorney and prosecutor negotiate a settlement. If the client agrees to the negotiated settlement that his attorney is able to get for him, then he enters a plea of guilty to the reduced charges (or to the agreed sentence).
One can typically expect several court appearances at least before a case is ultimately concluded in either a plea, a dismissal, or a trial.
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