C Divisional News

Please Take Notice - COVID-19 Procedures

Per the most recent Administrative Order of the Chief Justice of the Florida Supreme Court AOSC20-23 (Amendment 6) (In Re: Comprehensive COVID-19 Emergency Measures for the Florida State Courts), the Fifteenth Judicial Circuit is currently in Phase One of resuming normal court operations. Accordingly, pursuant to those Orders, all cases in Division C will be handled as follows:

Jury Trials remain suspended.

Parties wishing to schedule hearings for ESSENTIAL and NON-ESSENTIAL matters must be special set with the court by contacting the Judicial Assistant, Carey Helmes, at 561.355.2330. Only cases that are special set by the court will be heard.

The presence of a defendant is not required unless otherwise ordered by the Court.

Essential Proceedings

"Essential Proceedings" include in-custody bond hearings, in-custody pre-negotiated time-served plea agreements, in-court pre-negotiated plea agreements, and any other emergency or time sensitive matter as determined by the Court.  Typically, these matters are heard beginning at 8:15 a.m. Tuesdays, Wednesdays Thursdays and Fridays

Non-Essential Proceedings

All other proceedings are deemed to be "NON-ESSENTIAL PROCEEDINGS." NON-ESSENTIAL PROCEEDINGS will be conducted by REMOTE HEARINGS USING COMMUNICATIONS EQUIPMENT. Refer to AOSC20-23 (Amendment 4) (In Re: Comprehensive COVID-19 Emergency Measures for the Florida State Courts) for Administering of Oaths via Remote Audio-Video Communications Equipment regarding the procedures for utilizing remote witness testimony. These proceedings will generally be scheduled at 8:30 am, 9:30 am, 10:30 am and 1:00 pm with a maximum of 20 cases per session

Attorneys are invited and encouraged to appear remotely utilizing approved Communications Equipment such as Zoom, CourtCall, Visual Evidence, CourtScribes or any other telephonic and/or video conferencing service approved for use in this Circuit (see Listing of Circuit Approved Video Appearance Vendors for a list of approved vendors). Please advise the Judicial Assistant should you wish to do so when you call to schedule your hearing so that instructions may be provided. Be sure to indicate the method of appearance on the Notice of Hearing.

Documents and/or exhibits that a party wishes to use and/or introduce into evidence during a hearing conducted remotely must be received by the Court and all opposing parties no later than three (3) days prior to the scheduled hearing date.

Pleas in Absentia

All required forms (Plea form, Waiver of Rights and original fingerprints), in support of a Plea in Absentia must be submitted to Chambers. Once these documents are received our office will contact the attorney and State Attorney's Office to schedule a hearing.  Please take notice that filing these documents with the Clerk is insufficient.

Miscellaneous

Persons who are interested in listening to the court proceedings may do so by contacting the Court's Public Information Office, Debra Oates, at 561.355.4495 or 561.644.0054 to obtain an access line.

Submit proposed agreed orders to reset any case along with a waiver of speedy trial to the Division C email CAD-DivisionC@pbcgov.org

Thank you for your cooperation.


Judge August Bonavita presides over County Criminal Division C in Courtroom 4D in the Main Judicial Courthouse, 205 N. Dixie Highway, West Palm Beach, Florida.

Division C email: CAD-DivisionC@pbcgov.org.

Please see Divisional Instructions for Judge Bonavita's court procedures (***TEMPORARILY SUSPENDED***)

Standing Order Regarding Defendants Not to be Transported for Case Disposition Hearings and Status Checks