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What common types of officials can be found in a courtroom?

Most Maryland residents obey the laws of the state, so they are unfamiliar with many of the procedures and processes of the criminal justice system. However, if someone must appear in court with their attorney to defend themselves against charges, they should familiarize themselves with the system, including the various types of courtroom personnel who they will have contact with. But what are the most common types of officials that can be found in a courtroom?

The most powerful courtroom official is, of course, the judge who runs the entire court. In a jury trial, a judge will instruct the jury about the various points of law that are involved in the case that is being presented. If there is no jury for a particular case, the judge will listen to the arguments of both the prosecution and the criminal defense team for the trial and then render a final verdict. The judge will also rule on all points of law in the case and will allow or deny any objections that are raised by the attorneys in the case.

Another important courtroom official is the bailiff or court clerk. This person swears in all prospective jurors and witnesses in a trial. The bailiff must also maintain order in the courtroom and bring in all pieces of evidence that will be introduced in a trial. The bailiff usually accompanies the jury to and from the courtroom and must make sure that no outside individual tries to influence them.

A courtroom reporter is also a common courtroom official. However, any Maryland resident who may be facing criminal charges may want to speak with a criminal defense attorney in order to learn more about typical courtroom officials as well as the various procedures that take place in a court of law.

Source: americanbar.org, "How courts work", Accessed September 24, 2016

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