Frequently Asked Questions

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What if I change my mind about prosecuting or do not want to testify?

The assistant state attorney assigned the case will discuss any problems, doubts, or concerns there may be about your testimony. If you should decide that you do not want to continue with the prosecution of the case, you may be asked to sign a statement indicating your reasons for withdrawing the charges. The attorney prosecuting the case may decide to continue with the prosecution of the case and you may receive a subpoena to appear in court and testify.

What if someone tries to influence me to drop the charges or to refuse to testify by threats of any kind?

If anyone has made threats to you about the case, either in or out of court, that person may have committed a crime. If this happens to you, immediately contact your local law enforcement agency to report the threat and the assistant state attorney handling the pending case.

Court Attire

Be neat in appearance. Dress or “Sunday” clothes are recommended. Shorts, tank tops, flip-flops, and swimming attire are not allowed. Chewing gum and caps/hats are prohibited in the courtroom.

Property Return

If property was stolen as part of the crime, it becomes important as evidence in the case. It is helpful for
the jury to actually see the property at trial. Thus, the state often prefers to keep the property until trial to make sure nothing happens to the evidence. Should this be the case, the property remains in the same condition as it was at the time of the crime. If you need the property before the trial has been completed, please advise the assistant state attorney so that, if possible, an effort can be made to return the property to you in an expedient manner.

Child Care

Unfortunately, child care facilities are not available. Proceedings are unpredictable; therefore, it is recommended that you find someone to care for your child/children.

Transportation and Parking

If you have difficulty with transportation to necessary court proceedings or if you have any questions regarding parking, please call the assistant state attorney.

Change of Address Information for Restitution

If the defendant is court ordered to pay restitution, it is important to keep the proper agency notified of your current address. Proper notification should include case information such as defendant’s name and court case number.

If conviction was for a:


The Probation and Parole agency in the county in which the defendant was sentenced is responsible for the collection and disbursement of restitution. See pages 18 & 19 for addresses of the various Probation Offices.


The Office of the Clerk of Court for each county is responsible for the collection and disbursement of restitution. Their addresses are as follows:

DeSoto County

Office of the Clerk of Court
Attn: Misdemeanor Clerk 115 East Oak Street
Arcadia, FL 34266
Phone: (863) 993-4880

Manatee County

Office of the Clerk of Court
Attn: Criminal Finance Dept.
P.O. Box 25400 Bradenton, FL 34206
Phone: (941) 749-1800

Sarasota County

Office of the Clerk of Court
Attn: Fiscal Clerk
P.O. Box 3079 Sarasota, FL 34230
Phone: (941) 861-7400