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     Idaho Statutes

Idaho Statutes are updated to the website July 1 following the legislative session.


19-3901.  Complaint or citation. All proceedings and actions before the magistrates division of the district court for a public offense of which such court has jurisdiction, must be commenced by complaint setting forth the offense charged, with such particulars of time, place, person and property as to enable the defendant to understand distinctly the character of the offense complained of, and to answer the complaint. A complaint for a misdemeanor must be sworn to before a magistrate or judge. A complaint for an infraction may be an unsworn complaint signed by a law enforcement officer. Provided, however, as to any misdemeanor or infraction triable by a magistrate, a law enforcement officer may, in lieu of making a written complaint, issue to the defendant a uniform citation containing a complaint and a summons to appear in a form and in the manner prescribed by rule of the supreme court. The complaint in the uniform citation shall contain a certification by the law enforcement officer to the effect that he certifies that he has reasonable grounds to believe, and does believe, that the person cited committed the offense contrary to law. The citation shall be served upon the defendant by obtaining his written promise to appear in court at a time certain or by physically delivering the citation to the defendant. The citation shall be processed in the courts as prescribed by rule of the supreme court. If the defendant fails to appear on a misdemeanor citation at the time indicated in the summons, the defendant may be prosecuted for the misdemeanor offense of failure to appear under section 19-3901A, Idaho Code.

[(19-3901) Cr. Prac. 1864, sec. 595, p. 287; R.S., R.C., & C.L., sec. 8280; C.S., sec. 9227; I.C.A., sec. 19-4001; am. 1967, ch. 152, sec. 1, p. 342; am. 1971, ch. 117, sec. 1, p. 400; am. 1979, ch. 165, sec. 1, p. 509; am. 1982, ch. 353, sec. 9, p. 874; am. 1983, ch. 25, sec. 1, p. 67.]

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