45th District Court


A felony offense is any crime for which the penalty exceeds one year in jail. The criminal division of the 45th District Court is responsible for processing felony offenses from arraignment through preliminary examination. Felony cases are authorized by the Oakland County Prosecutor's Office and are serious crimes with possible penalties of fines, probation and/or imprisonment.

At the preliminary examination, it is the responsibility of the prosecutor to prove there is probable cause that the crime was committed and the defendant committed the crime. If the judge determines these both to be true, the case will be bound over to the Oakland County Circuit Court. Any bond that has been posted on the case will then be transferred to Circuit Court along with the case.


If arrested for a felony, the arraignment typically follows the day after the arrest. Felony arraignments are held before a judge or magistrate. When charged with a felony offense, a person's first appearance is in the District Court for arraignment. At the arraignment, the judge or magistrate will advise a person of the following:

A person may not plead guilty to a felony at this stage of the proceedings.

The judge or magistrate will set a date for a probable cause conference within 7-14 calendar days following the arraignment, and a preliminary exam date within 5-7 days following the probable cause conference.

If eligible and able to post bond, a person is released to appear on the scheduled probable cause conference date. If not eligible for bond or unable to post the set bond, a person is remanded to the Oakland County jail until the scheduled probably cause conference.

Retaining a lawyer

If you have been charged with a felony, you may need a lawyer to represent you. You should make arrangements to hire an attorney prior to your first court date. If you cannot afford to hire an attorney, you may at any time petition the court for a court-appointed attorney. All petitions for a court-appointed attorney must be made in front of the judge hearing your case.