M.C. Blanchard Judicial Building
190 Governmental Center, 6th Floor
Pensacola, FL 32502
Setting Criminal Motion Hearings
Criminal motion hearings are scheduled during Judge Trials/Criminal Motions week prior to trial date. Motions must be filed in a timely manner as to allow the opposing party sufficient time to review and determine if subpoenas are necessary, and if so, to permit sufficient time for service. The motion should be filed with the Clerk's Office, and a copy provided to the Court and to opposing counsel prior to calling the Judicial Assistant to set the motion for hearing. The parties must have the motion in hand before the matter can be set for hearing. The State may need a minimum of ten days to send subpoenas if witnesses are needed. Include statement specifying whether the opposing counsel agrees or opposes the motion. The Court will consider the motion and may grant or deny the motion without a hearing. If possible, efforts should be made to set all motions for hearing prior to the morning of trial. *Special jury instructions must be provided at or before jury selection. Otherwise, such instructions will not be allowed on the day of trial.
A defendant must be arrested prior to seeking a bond reduction or modification. Reductions, modifications, revocations and hearings to set a bond amount are scheduled during video week or during Judge Trials and Criminal Motion Hearings, after the written motion is filed and a copy is provided to the opposing counsel.
If an attorney or the defendant requests that the original date be reset for good cause, the date may be moved within the same week. Any requests for an appearance to be reset outside of Arraignment week must be submitted directly to the Judge’s office in writing, with copies provided to the State Attorney.
Failures to Appear
All FTA warrants, unless set aside for sufficient reason, will remain outstanding until an appearance is made by the Defendant before the Court or via his or her attorney.
Control dates generally will fall on Tuesday of Arraignment week. If an individual fails to comply by the control date scheduled for 8:30 a.m., or 10:00 a.m. as announced by the Court, an appearance is required.
Criminal pretrial conferences are scheduled through the Judge's office and upon request only. The party wishing to schedule a pretrial conference must contact the Judicial Assistant for a future date and time. The Defendant's appearance is not mandatory, if waived in writing by the Defendant.
Personal appearance by the attorney and client is mandatory. Any request to waive an appearance must be filed prior to plea day by motion with the Clerk of Court, a copy provided to the Assistant State Attorney and to the Court, with a proposed order to the Court (see Proposed Orders Paragraph below). Written Motions for Continuances must be filed with the Clerk of Court prior to plea day, with a copy provided to the Court, along with a proposed order to the Court (see Proposed Orders Paragraph below). Motion must include whether the opposing party agrees or opposes the motion.
Written motions for continuances with proposed order may be filed with the Clerk of Court and a copy provided to the Court and opposing party prior to court date. Motion must include whether opposing counsel agrees or opposes the motion.
Announcing Ready for Trial
When announcing ready for trial, this means each party has completed all things necessary in order to select a jury. For example, witness availability (especially law enforcement; review of discovery, such as in-car videos). This requirement is to make sure you have spoken to all potential witnesses and obtained information needed from law enforcement.
All civil hearings are scheduled through the Judge's office. When a case is resolved prior to the hearing date, kindly notify the judge's office as soon as possible so that the time allotted for the hearing can be cleared and used on other matters pending before Div. I. Please ensure that all parties are notified of cancellations.
Probation Early Pleas
The Probation Officer and Assistant State Attorney must be contacted prior to scheduling an early plea on a violation of probation case.
Effective January 1, 2015, the Escambia County Clerk of Court will no longer accept proposed Orders through the Florida Court E-Filing Portal. All proposed Orders must be submitted directly to the presiding judge by either submitting the proposed order via hand delivery or by emailing it in Microsoft Word format with the title "Proposed Order" and “Defendant’s name and case number” in the subject line directly to Judge William's Judicial Assistant at . *This provision does not apply to pro se defendants, should they choose not to utilize the EPortal option.