FAQ's

How can I access evidence in the Vault of the Clerk of Court?

The Clerk of Court will require a written request to view criminal evidence contained in the Clerk’s vaults at least 10 days prior to the requested viewing date.

PROCEDURES FOR VIEWING CRIMINAL EVIDENCE AT MOORE JUSTICE CENTER, 2825 Judge Fran Jamieson Way, Viera 32940

  1. The Brevard County Clerk of Court is charged with guarding the integrity of criminal evidence within its possession. We must treat criminal evidence contained within our office with the utmost security to maintain the integrity of the evidence and the chain of custody.
  2. To insure that a request to view criminal evidence is properly completed, The Brevard County Clerk of Court will provide access to criminal evidence in a secured area at the Moore Justice Center upon reasonable request and opportunity for the clerk to review evidence for required redaction of non-public information.
  3. The procedure for viewing criminal evidence is as follows:
    1. Make a written request to the Clerk of Court. Your request should state with particularity any specific items of evidence you wish to view.
    2. Provide several alternate times and dates that you are available for viewing the evidence.
    3. Provide any special information such as your intent to bring cameras, crews etc. for the making of a separate record of the evidence that you may view.
    4. Allow the Clerk at least 10 working days to respond. §119.07 (1)(c)(d) (e) and (f) Florida Statutes require the Clerk to respond to a request for public information and viewing of criminal evidence with reasons for any refusals, and in particular if there are any items that are under court seal or denied due to statutory exemption.
    5. Allow sufficient time in your planning for the possibility that you may have to seek an order of the court to view certain items before access to that evidence is scheduled.
    6. On the date and time scheduled, please plan to arrive at least fifteen minutes prior to the appointed time in order to clear the Court House Security timely.
    7. You will be met by a Deputy Clerk who will escort you and your party to a secured viewing area.
    8. You will be required to wear latex gloves for the handling of any evidence proffered to you by the evidence clerk.
    9. In the viewing room, one of two deputy clerks will disperse each item of evidence to you for view and the other will log the evidence presented to you “out”.
    10. BE ADVISED THAT DURING THE VIEWING OF THE EVIDENCE, YOU WILL BE SUBJECT TO SURVEILLANCE CAMERAS INSTALLED IN THE ROOM.
    11. Once you have completed your viewing and photographing or recordation of the evidence, you will return each item to the designated deputy clerk who will log the item as “in” and will return it back into the containers of evidence for the case.
    12. A deputy clerk will conduct you and your party from the secured area back to the lobby.
  4. If your equipment set up and tear down will be extensive, you need to plan ample time for this part of the procedure. Also, be aware that a deputy clerk is required to be present with you and your party for the entire procedure.
  5. You will be charged a fee for the services starting at the beginning of the second hour pursuant to §119.07(1) and (4) (d) of $15.00 per hour for each attending Deputy Clerk starting with the second hour of the viewing process, and copy fees of $1.00 per page following the first 5 copies of pages that are free. We will not charge any time our staff spends redacting evidence, only for time spent during case review beginning with the second hour. We will wait to hear from you before moving forward with the listing below.
  6. A reasonable estimate of your clerk staff costs may at a threshold minimum be $60 for a viewing that typically lasts three hours involving 2-3 Clerk of Court personnel.
    Please be advised that requests to view evidence presented on the same day as you wish to view that evidence may not be granted. There may be exceptions, but in general, no evidence will be retrieved for viewing from the vault except by pre-arrangement and payment of an estimated fee.

The Brevard County Clerk of Court thanks you for your consideration, attention and cooperation in this matter.

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How can I seal or expunge my criminal case?

The Seal and Expunge process, instructions and forms can be found at http://www.fdle.state.fl.us/expunge/ FLORIDA STATUTES 943.045, 943.0581, 943.0585, & 943.059

These instructions are intended as a brief guide for those who wish to expunge or seal their criminal history record. They are not intended to replace the assistance of a qualified attorney nor statutes concerning the expunction or sealing of a criminal history record.

  • Before you can file your petition to expunge or seal your criminal history record with the court, you must apply to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement for a certificate of eligibility for sealing or expunction. The application for the certificate of eligibility must include:

A money order, cashier’s check, or certified check for $75.00 made payable to:
Florida Department of Law Enforcement.

  • This processing fee is non-refundable, regardless of the results of the certificate review. A fee waiver may be granted by the Executive Director of the Department upon submission of a written request and in his determination that the waiver is in the best interests of criminal justice.
  • A completed Application for Certification of Eligibility. Section A must be completed by you and if you are seeking an expunction in addition to section A, section B must be completed by the State Attorney’s Office, Sealing and Expunction Section, at 2725 Judge Fran Jamieson Way, Viera, FL 32940. The application (form number, FDLE 40-021) may be obtained from any of our offices.
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Can the Clerk change my court date?

If you are scheduled for a first appearance or arraignment on a misdemeanor or traffic charge and you have not previously received a continuance, the Clerk's office may be able to grant you a continuance of your court date.

You must contact the Clerk's office in person, by phone or in writing to receive the continuance prior to the date and time of your scheduled court appearance. You must sign documentation reflecting the continuance and return it to our office. By accepting the continuance you are waiving your right to a speedy trial. You will be given the next available court date and you must attend court on that date or a bench warrant will be issued for your arrest.

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What will happen if I fail to appear in court?

If you fail to appear at any scheduled court event the judge can order a bench warrant for your arrest. The judge that signs the bench warrant will decide if a bond amount is to be set, or to specify that you are to be held in jail and prohibited from bonding out.

It may be possible for the Clerk's office to reschedule your court date provided the court event that you failed to appear for was a misdemeanor arraignment, traffic arraignment or an order to show cause hearing.

The Clerk's office can reschedule you for these types of court events only. However, any issued bench warrant for failing to appear at the original court date will remain outstanding. On the new court date the judge will address the issue of the bench warrant and failure to appear along with the original charge.

For any other types of court appearances that you failed to appear you will need to turn yourself in at the jail and bond out, or contact your attorney or probation officer.

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What is a bail bond?

A bail bond is a document which assures to the court that a person charged with an offense and who typically is in jail, will, if released from incarceration appear for future court dates and remain in the jurisdiction of the court.

For example, if a person is charged with violating the law and is taken into custody by law enforcement, that person will be held in jail until they can see a judge. The judge will decide the amount and type of the bond based on the gravity of the charges and/or the prior record of the defendant. It is also possible that the judge may order the defendant released without requiring a bail bond.

There are very specific charges that a defendant may be able to bond out on without the necessity of seeing a judge. One example of this is an arrest as the result of a bench warrant. The amount of the bond may have been set at the time the bench warrant was signed by the judge. Another example is those charges that have a bond schedule established.

Generally speaking, 2 types of bail bonds are utilized. A surety bond is a written guarantee by a bonding company ensuring the appearance of a defendant for all future court dates. A surety bond is an independent agreement between the defendant and the bonding company. Normally the defendant is required by the bonding company to deposit with them a nonrefundable percentage of the overall bond amount. The bonding company is essentially providing the court with an insurance policy that the defendant will appear in court and is then liable for the full amount of the bond if the defendant does not appear.

If the defendant fails to appear for court, the bond can be forfeited by the judge. Once the defendant is re-arrested for the failure to appear, they will be required to go through the bonding process again, attempting to bond out on the initial charge, and the failure to appear charge. It is possible for the bonding company to produce the defendant and request the judge to waive the forfeiture. The defendant will still be required to post a bond, if any, on the failure to appear charge.

After the case has been disposed by the court the surety bond will be released and a certificate of discharge will be sent to the bonding company by the Clerk's office.

The other type of bond traditionally used is a cash bond. If a cash bond is ordered by the judge, the total amount of the bond will have to be posted with the jail before the defendant will be released. If for any reason the defendant fails to appear for court, the judge presiding over the case may forfeit the bond. The money will then be held in a special forfeiture fund pending any orders issued by the judge.

If a cash bond is posted, after the case has been disposed by the court, the cash bond will be returned to the party who posted the bond. However, the judge may order the deduction of any fine amounts from the cash bond. Once the judge releases the bond, the Clerk's office will prepare a check, minus any judicially ordered deductions and mail it to the appropriate party within 10 days of receipt of the judges order.

Pursuant to Florida Statute 903.286, any cash bond posted on or after 07/01/2005 will be applied to any upaid court fees, court costs, and criminal penalties. It does not matter who posted the bond for the defendant. If the defendant has any unpaid criminal fees, court costs, or penalties, the bond will be applied to those obligations. Any funds remaining after all of the above noted fees are paid will be refunded to the depositor.

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How do I get an attorney?

After you have been arrested and at your first appearance before a judge, you will be asked if you can afford the services of an attorney. If you state that you cannot, the judge will review your financial situation and then decide whether to appoint a public defender as your attorney or instruct you to seek private counsel. If a public defender is appointed, you will be assessed an application fee to be determined by the judge.

During the final disposition of your case, the judge will determine whether or not you are required to pay a fixed amount for utilizing the services of the public defender. The judge may order that a lien be entered against you to help pay for operating cost incurred by the public defender in preparing your defense. You must pay this lien and the application fee through the Clerk's office.

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