Procedures & Fines
The City of Rio Hondo court docket is the schedule of the court. Defendants will be expected to adhere to the procedures and protocol of the court at all times, including proper attire.
All mobile devices, including phones, must be turned off. Photography and audio recordings are prohibited. No food or drink will be allowed in the courtroom at any time.
The law requires you to make an appearance on your case. Your appearance or Court date is noted on your citation. You (or your attorney) may do this in person before the Judge or in writing by mail or fax. For your convenience, there is a signature line and a plea line at the bottom of the citation which can be used as a written "appearance” or written notification.
You must enter one of these three pleas:
- Guilty- means you admit guilt and either wish to give an explanation or just pay the fine. Once the fine is paid the case is closed. To view the form, please click here.
- No Contender (no contest) means that you do not want to admit guilt, but you do not want to contest the charge(s) in a trial. You may pay the fine; give an explanation or present proof of compliance. The Judge will review your case and will determine whether you're found guilty, sets a fine, or dismisses the charge(s). To view the form, please click here.
- Not Guilty- means you deny guilt and want a bench or jury trial to be set at a later date in this Court. You must post a bond set by the Judge to ensure that you will be present for the trial. To view the form, please click here.
You may also enter a plea without appearing in Court by printing and filling out the “Plea Without Appearance” form. To view the form please click here.
Driver's Safety Courses (DSC)
If you are charged with a traffic offense, you may request DSC. The request must be made before the appearance date on the citation. You must enter a plea of guilty or no contest; present a Texas DL and current insurance to the court; pay a fee of $144. You will have 90 days to complete DSC. Upon presenting a certificate of completion to the Court, the Judge may dismiss the offense. To view the form, please click here.
The judge may grant deferred disposition (place on probationary period 30-60-90 or 180 days) for most offenses. The request must be made in writing before the appearance date on the citation. If you do not violate any laws of the US during the probationary period, the Judge may dismiss the offense. The deferral fee for traffic violations (call the Court), TABC violations (call the Court), (call the Court) for Public Intoxication and Ordinances, and (Call the Court) for other offenses. To view the form, please click here.
Expired Vehicle Inspection, Invalid Registration, or Failure to Display Driver's License/Expired DL cases may be dismissed at the Judge's discretion if the defect is remedied by your appearance date and the proof is presented in writing to the Court (a $20 fee is required).
Failure to Provide Financial Responsibility
If you present evidence of financial responsibility (insurance), valid at the time of the offense, to the Court on or before your appearance date this violation may be dismissed at Judge's discretion.
Fines and Fees
If you are convicted of an offense and are unable to pay the fine and court costs, you may have the court assess your ability to pay and the court may provide alternatives to full payment in satisfying the judgment.
Failure to Appear
If you fail to appear in person, by mail, email, or fax by the date noted on your citation, you can be charged with an additional offense of "Violations Of Promise To Appear" or "Failure to Appear" and a warrant for your arrest will be issued.
The offenses of "Violation of Promise to Appear" and "Failure to Appear" carry with them additional court costs, fees, and fines.