Criminal Defense for Pasco County
If you were accused of a misdemeanor or felony in the Sixth Judicial Circuit in Pasco County, FL, your case is assigned to a judge in the New Port Richey or Dade City courthouse.
The clerk’s office assigns a circuit or county criminal, juvenile delinquency, or traffic case to either:
- The Robert D. Sumner Judicial Center in Dade City for East Pasco County cases when the offense location is east of US Highway 41; or
- The West Pasco Judicial Center in New Port Richey for West Pasco County cases when the offense location is west of US Highway 41.
The Pasco County Detention Facility (also known as the “county jail”) is located between these two cities in Land O’Lakes, FL.
Most criminal cases begin with an investigation by a local law enforcement agency or DUI enforcement officer with:
- the Pasco Sheriff’s Office
- the New Port Richey Police Department
- the Port Richey Police Department
- the Dade City Police Department
- the Zephyrhills Police Department
- the Florida Highway Patrol
If you were arrested or given a “notice to appear” in court, find an experienced criminal defense attorney to represent you. Find an attorney as early as possible so that all defenses are available.
From the most serious felony offense to a first-time misdemeanor charge, an experienced criminal defense attorney can help you fight the charges.
Attorneys for Criminal Defense in Pasco County, FL
Contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at the Sammis Law Firm to discuss the best ways to fight criminal accusations. Our six attorneys are devoted exclusively to fighting criminal charges in the Sixth Judicial Circuit for Pasco County, FL.
We help people after an arrest or criminal investigation in New Port Richey, Port Richey, San Antonio, Zephyrhills, Land O’Lakes, Dade City, Trinity, St. Leo, Meadow Pointe, and Concord Station, FL.
Our main office is located in Tampa, FL. Our second office is conveniently located at 7509 Little Road, New Port Richey, FL, 34654, directly across from the West Pasco Judicial Center courthouse.
Contact us to discuss your felony or misdemeanor case during a free and confidential consultation.
Find out more about the charges pending against you, ways to avoid potential penalties, and the best way to fight the charges.
Criminal Cases in East Pasco or West Pasco
For the prosecution of criminal cases in Pasco County, the county is organized into two distinct areas:
- East Pasco
- West Pasco
Determining the separation line within the county is difficult because no easily identifiable geographical separation exists. As a general rule, the cases are divided depending on whether the incident occurred to the east or west of US Highway 41.
An easier way to determine if the case is an East or West Pasco case is by identifying the law enforcement agency involved. Circuit court and county court judges preside over cases in the judicial facilities located in New Port Richey and Dade City.
If the case is being handled by an East Pasco County law enforcement agency, it will probably be heard at the Robert D. Sumner Judicial Center in Dade City at 38053 Live Oak Avenue.
If the case is being handled by a West Pasco law enforcement agency, it will probably be heard in the Pasco Government Center in New Port Richey at 7530 Little Road.
The East Pasco County Law Enforcement Agencies include:
- the Dade City Police Department;
- the Zephyrhills Police Department;
- the Sheriff’s Office – East Pasco; or
- the Sheriff’s Office – East Pasco Patrol Division.
The West Pasco County Cases Law Enforcement Agencies include:
- the New Port Richey Police Department;
- the Port Richey Police Department;
- the Sheriff’s Office – West Pasco; or
- the Sheriff’s Office – West Pasco Patrol Division.
Judges in Pasco County for Criminal and DUI Cases
The most recent judicial assignments for criminal cases in the Circuit Courts in Pasco County, FL, were announced in Administrative Order No. 2022-003 PA-CIR. Effective February 14, 2022, the East Pasco Judicial Assignments in the Criminal Court Sections in Circuit Court in Dade City include:
Sections 1, 2
- Judge Gregory G. Groger – All Criminal cases, including violations of probation, excluding technical violations
- Judge Linda H. Babb – Technical violations of probation
- Judge Susan Barthle and Judge Kemba Johnson Lewis – Criminal jury trials, as needed
- Judge Shawn Crane – Adult Drug Court, Veterans Court
JUVENILE COURT SECTIONS
Sections 5, 28
Judge Linda H. Babb – All Juvenile Delinquency
Judge Susan Barthle – During the absence of the assigned juvenile dependency judge, Judge Susan Barthle is designated as a juvenile court judge in Pasco County for the purpose of handling shelter hearings and other juvenile matters in the juvenile dependency division.
FAMILY COURT SECTIONS
Judge Alicia Polk – 50% Domestic violence cases including any indirect criminal contempt affidavits prosecuted by the State Attorney’s Office
Judge Brian Gnage – 50% Domestic violence cases including any indirect criminal contempt affidavits prosecuted by the State Attorney’s Office
Judge Linda H. Babb – Dating, repeat, and sexual violence and stalking cases.
WEST PASCO JUDICIAL ASSIGNMENTS
The West Pasco Judicial Assignments in the Criminal Court Sections in Circuit Court in New Port Richey include:
CRIMINAL COURT SECTIONS
Judge Mary M. Handsel – 50% Criminal cases, including section 3 violations of probation; Indirect criminal contempt affidavits filed in Section Q1 and prosecuted by the State Attorney’s Office
Judge Kim Campbell – 50% Criminal cases, including section 4 violations of probation; Indirect criminal contempt affidavits filed in Section Q2 and prosecuted by the State Attorney’s Office
Criminal jury trials, as needed Judge Kimberly Sharpe Byrd
and Judge Declan P. Mansfield
Judge Shawn Crane – Adult Drug Court, Veterans Court
The East Pasco Judicial Assignments for Criminal Court Sections in Dade City, FL, include:
- Judge William G. Sestak is assigned to Section 10 and 14 for Misdemeanors, DUI, criminal traffic, violations of probation and orders to show cause relative to cases heard under this jurisdiction while presiding.
The West Pasco Judicial Assignments for Criminal Court Sections in New Port Richey, FL, include:
- Judge Joseph A. Poblick in Section 16 presides over misdemeanors, DUI, criminal traffic, violations of probation and orders to show cause relative to cases heard under this jurisdiction while presiding;
- Judge Anne Wansboro in Section 15 presides over misdemeanors, DUI, criminal traffic, violations of probation and orders to show cause relative to cases heard under this jurisdiction while presiding; and
- Judge Debra Roberts in Section 17 presides over misdemeanors, DUI, criminal traffic, violations of probation and orders to show cause relative to cases heard under this jurisdiction while presiding.
Different Types of Criminal Cases Prosecuted in Pasco County
We created this website to provide general information about specific criminal offenses under Florida law. This website also explains many possible defenses that can be used to fight these types of charges prosecuted in Pasco County, FL.
At Sammis Law Firm, our lawyers represent people charged with both felony and misdemeanor crimes in Pasco County, FL, including:
- Driving under the influence (DUI) or drunk driving;
- Reckless driving;
- Driving while license suspended or revoked (also known as a suspended license or revoked license crimes);
- Habitual traffic offender (HTO) revocations, including filing an appeal to remove the HTO five-year revocation so that the client can get their driver’s license reinstated, as well as representing someone charged with driving while HTO;
- Simple battery or aggravated battery with great bodily harm or a deadly weapon;
- Assault or Aggravated Assault:
- Domestic violence can include domestic battery, interference with a 911 call, child abuse, aggravated child abuse, child endangerment, stalking, or violation of a domestic violence restraining orders;
- Injunctions for protection against domestic violence, repeat violence, stalking, dating violence;
- Petitions for a Risk Protection Order;
- Violation of probation cases in Pasco County for both felony and misdemeanor cases;
- Early termination of probation, community control or house arrest;
- Investigations by Pasco County Child Protective Team and Investigations;
- Seal or Expunge a Criminal Record from an arrest in Pasco County for Dade City or New Port Richey;
- Drug Crimes in Pasco County include:
- simple possession
- possession with intent to sell;
- trafficking in a controlled substance;
- Marijuana crimes include simple possession, possession of cannabis with intent to sell, cultivation or manufacture of cannabis, operating a marijuana grow house, to trafficking in cannabis;
- Theft offenses, including shoplifting, petit theft, grand theft, and fraud, or scheme to defraud;
- Property crimes, including burglary and robbery;
- Resolving an outstanding warrant, including an arrest warrant, bench warrant, or capias for your arrest after a failure to appear or failure to comply with a Pasco County court order in Dade City or New Port Richey;
- Extradition on a Fugitive Warrant to Pasco County in Dade City or New Port Richey, FL; or
- Arrest on a felony or misdemeanor arrest warrant in Pasco County;
- Ordinance violations.
Our juvenile defense attorneys in Pasco County also represent young people accused of a crime in juvenile court in New Port Richey and Dade City, FL.
Courthouses for Criminal Cases in Pasco County, FL
Criminal cases in Pasco County will be held at either the New Port Richey or Dade City Courthouse.
Pasco County Courthouse in Dade City Robert D. Sumner Judicial Center 38053 Live Oak Avenue
Dade City, FL 33523
Pasco County Courthouse in New Port Richey
West Pasco Judicial Center
7530 Little Road
New Port Richey, FL 34654
If you have been arrested or believe you might be for an offense in Pasco County, Florida, your criminal case will be transferred to a courthouse in New Port Richey or Dade City, Florida. Contact a lawyer experienced in handling criminal cases in Polk County, Florida.
Criminal Trials During COVID in Pasco County, FL
Update: All jury trials were put on hold across the state by the Florida Supreme Court in March 2020. In September, the 6th Judicial Circuit in Pasco County transitioned to Phase 2 and started jury trials in October.
The courts reversed course on resuming in-person court proceedings because the spread of the virus prevented them from doing so safely. On December 9, 2020, jury trials were temporarily suspended in Pasco County.
The order imposing the new restrictions does not affect the grand jury in Pasco County, scheduled to convene Thursday, December 10, 2020. The State Attorney is cleared to proceed with grand jury selection and presentations for murder cases.
On Wednesday, Feb. 10, 2021, the chief judge of the Sixth Judicial Circuit modified the sixth circuit’s operational plan as it affects Pasco County based on a review of the most recent COVID-19 data.
As of March 15, 2021, criminal and civil jury trials resumed in Pasco County.
DUI Attorneys in Pasco County – If you were arrested for DUI in Pasco County, you only have ten (10) days to file a request for a formal review hearing with the DMV to protect your driver’s license from being suspended. Visit our DUI information centers for articles about how to protect yourself after a DUI arrest to avoid a conviction for cases involving a DUI in New Port Richey or a DUI in Dade City, FL.
Seal or Expunge a Criminal History Record in Pasco County, FL – Read more about the process to seal or expunge a criminal history record at the courthouse in New Port Richey or Dade City.
Pasco County Criminal and Traffic Cases
Pasco County Clerk of Court for Criminal Cases – Click here to research your misdemeanor or felony case through the Pasco County Clerk’s Office. Find out more about the three courthouses in Pasco County, including:
- The Robert D. Sumner Judicial Center, 38053 Live Oak Avenue, Dade City, Florida;
- The West Pasco Judicial Center, 7530 Little Road, New Port Richey, Florida; and
- The Pasco Historic Courthouse, 37918 Meridian Avenue, Dade City, Florida.
Pasco County Traffic Infractions – Click here to find information about any traffic ticket, infraction, or citation in Pasco County, FL. Find the traffic fine schedule and traffic citation guide for electing to attend a driver improvement course or contesting the citation during a trial after entering a “not guilty” plea. You can also find the sample forms used in traffic court, including the motion to continue civil traffic infraction hearing, the election to attend a driver improvement course, or the form for entering a plea of not guilty or no contest.
Uniform Bond Schedule in Pasco County – Read more about the uniform bond schedule and special procedures in New Port Richey and Dade City for the first appearance and emergency bond motions.
Pasco County Law Enforcement Agencies
Pasco County Sheriff’s Office – The Pasco Sheriff’s Office (PSO) was the first Sheriff’s Office in the central Florida region to adopt a full-scale body camera program for all patrol officers that began in early 2015. To make a public records request, contact the records department at Records@pascosheriff.org or call (813) 235-6118 or fax (813) 235-6119.
- Pasco County Sheriff’s Office in New Port Richey is located at:
8700 Citizen Drive
New Port Richey, Florida 34654
Phone Number: 727-847-5878
- Pasco County Sheriff’s Office in Land O Lakes is located at:
20101 Central Blvd.
Land O Lakes, Florida 34639
Phone Number: 813-996-6982
- Pasco County Sheriff’s Office in Dade City is located at:
36409 State Road 52
Dade City, Florida 33525
Phone Number: 352-518-5000
This article was last updated on Friday, June 16, 2023.