December 28, 2021 | Criminal Defense
If you have questions about a case status, it is important to know that the court and prosecutor are not your friends. You are better off calling a criminal defense attorney with questions. If your case is still open and pending, you could incriminate yourself by talking with a prosecutor.
Additionally, the court clerk and prosecutor have their own agenda that does not align with your best interest. The prosecutor wants to get you in jail as quickly as possible; the court just wants cases resolved.
Disposed vs. Disposition in Louisville
“Disposed” and “disposition” are two related terms in the Kentucky court system. Both refer to what happened at the end of a case. Disposed means the case is over, whereas disposition refers to the many specific ways it could have ended.
Disposed is a very general term that means a case has reached its conclusion. When the case status says “disposed,” the court has entered a final order. Disposed can be a good thing or a bad thing, depending on what the final ruling in the case was.
It can mean the following things:
- The defendant has been convicted and sentenced;
- The charges were dismissed by the court for lack of probable cause;
- The charges were dropped by the prosecutor; or
- The defendant was acquitted at trial and found innocent.
On the other hand, a “disposition” tells you exactly what happened on a given charge. Examples of different dispositions include a conviction, an acquittal, a dismissal, and a guilty plea.
Here’s an example of how these terms may work in practice. Suppose you or your attorney look up your DUI case on a court’s online database. Suppose the case has ended. The status might say “disposed.” The disposition might say “charges dropped.”
As you can see, disposed and disposition are closely related. Disposed just means the case is concluded. You need additional information, the disposition, to know what actually happened.
Can I Appeal a Sentence or Conviction After My Case is Disposed?
When a case has been disposed of, it is critical that you act quickly if you are unhappy with the disposition. Once a case is disposed of, that decision is final unless there is a successful appeal.
Appeals are extremely complicated and have many strict legal requirements. A thorough knowledge of constitutional law and criminal procedure is needed to have any shot at a successful appeal. After a conviction, it is an uphill battle to get a decision overturned.
The Louisville criminal defense lawyers at Suhre & Associates have helped many clients through the appeals process. Our team of aggressive, experienced attorneys understands the nuances of appellate practice, and we want to help you fight your conviction or sentence on appeal if you need help.