District Court/Juvenile

District Court Unit (Providence County)

The District Court Unit in Providence County prosecutes a multitude of criminal matters brought forward in the 6th Division District Court and the Rhode Island Traffic Tribunal. Each day, District Court Unit prosecutors conduct bail hearings on capital cases and enumerated drug delivery offenses.

We also regularly handle cases against defendants accused of violating the terms and conditions of either their bail on an existing case or of a pending sentence of probation or suspended time. Additionally, Unit prosecutors handle motions to expunge, motions to reduce and/or modify bail and bail conditions, motions to vacate no-contact orders, applications for post-conviction relief and waivers of information for certain felony offenses on a daily basis.

Our Office has exclusive authority to prosecute every charge of breathalyzer refusal brought under Rhode Island General Law §31-27-2.1. The District Court Unit prosecutes all breathalyzer-refusal cases at the Rhode Island Traffic Tribunal.

The District Court Unit prosecutes pretrial and trial matters brought by various state law enforcement agencies throughout Rhode Island, primarily the Rhode Island State Police. In addition, we handle all criminal cases referred by the state Contractors Registration and Licensing Board and from the Department of Labor and Training.

The District Courts traditionally are the busiest courts in the judicial system.

Juvenile Prosecution Unit

The Juvenile Prosecution Unit prosecutes all juveniles charged with offenses that would be punishable as felonies if committed by an adult. In addition, we prosecute all juveniles who are charged by the Rhode Island State Police, State Fire Marshall and the Department of Environmental Management, as well as all juveniles who are charged with violations of probation and adults who commit child neglect or exploitation of a minor.

In addition to prosecuting cases, we work within the community to educate students and the public about juvenile laws and prosecution of juveniles. Staff members also serve on several committees and task forces pertaining to juvenile and child abuse cases, including the Rhode Island Sex Offender Registration and Notification Task Force, the Rhode Island Council for Interstate Compact for Juveniles, Hasbro Children’s Hospital Child Protection Program, the Child Advocacy Center at Day One, among several others.

As part of this team, a victim witness assistant corresponds with juvenile clients who have been the victim of juvenile offenders, as well as adult offenders charged with child neglect. The victim witness assistant also helps prosecutors with interviews of juvenile victims and witnesses, attends Family Court hearings, coordinates with the Rhode Island Juvenile Probation Office on issues of victim restitution, and serves as part of the Child Advocacy team, where cases of molestation and sexual assault are reviewed for potential criminal prosecution.