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District Court Unit


The District Court assumes jurisdiction over almost all misdemeanor offenses, encompassing roughly 30,000 criminal cases each year. The range of offenses covers drug-related crimes, burglaries, incarcerable traffic offenses, thefts, trespassing, and assaults, among others.


The Unit is equipped with several specialized resources such as a citizen screening division, mental health court, drug court, economic crimes division, municipal infractions, and a DUI unit that extends its services to non-felony fatalities. 


The unit handles cases in both the Hyattsville and Upper Marlboro Courthouses.



For any misdemeanor offense that carries more than 90 days in jail, the defendant has a right to a trial by jury. For any District Court trial which results in a conviction, the defendant has a right to an appeal which takes the form of a new trial. These criminal jury trial prayers (CJ Cases) and criminal appeals (CA Cases) are handled in the Circuit Court by District Court prosecutors approximately every six weeks.


Laura Carter is the administrative aide who coordinates the jury trial and criminal appeal cases before they are assigned to prosecutors for trial and she can be reached at

Prosecutors are highly encouraged and often make use of the several diversion programs and offerings available.

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