Traffic Bench Trials

why choose a bench trial rather than a jury trial?

Most traffic offenses are tried in Maryland District courts (all payable traffic offenses cases and most must appear offenses don't entitle you to a jury trrial). Every trial is with a judge only. This can be beneficial in several ways, mostly providing a double-trial option. You can have a trial in District court and if not acquitted, then a jury trial in Circuit Court on all must appear offenses or a bench trial on appeal for all payable offenses. All testimony from the police and other witnesses can then be transcribed and used against them in the second trial.

WHAT's the first step?

If you were arrested or issued a summons or citation for a traffic court offense, you want to act quickly to gather evidence and prepare a defense. Call Mr. Cleckner at 301-789-1616 for a free consultation over the telephone or to set up an in-person appointment, and he will answer any questions you have.


Even though a jury isn't involved, bench trials can be very complicated, and conviction can cause problems with your ability to get a job or otherwise keep a clean criminal or MVA record. We'd be happy to discuss your options with you. We handle all facets of criminal and jailable traffic defense, and if we can't answer your questions, we'll do some research or find someone who can answer them. Call or email today, your future may depend on it!