Frequently Asked Questions
Q. Do I need to pay for any services provided by the DA's Office?
You do not need to pay for any services provided by the DA's Office. All all DA's Office services (prosecution, advocacy, legal support, etc.) are free/no cost.
Q. What happens when my case goes to the DA's Office?
Click here for an explanation of what happens to your case: https://www.sdcda.org/prosecuting/crime-to-criminal-case/index.html
For more information on what the District Attorney does, visit: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Iha1Ou_sqao
Q. Can I drop the charges on my case?
No. Here's why: in California it's up to the District Attorney’s Office to decide whether we can prove a case beyond a reasonable doubt. While we ask for your input, the ultimate decision whether to file charges or not rests with the DA’s Office.
Q. Can I get a copy of my police report?
You can request a copy of your police report directly from the law enforcement agency that took it (links or phone numbers are below):
Carlsbad Police Department: Call 760-931-2119
Coronado Police Department: Call (619) 522-7366
National City Police Department: Call 619-336-4400
Q. Is the suspect in jail? Can I be notified if the suspect is released from jail?
You can find out if a person is in jail here: https://apps.sdsheriff.net/wij/wij.aspx
You can also register here to get alerts on your cell phone about prisoner releases: https://vinelink.vineapps.com/state/CA
Q. How long will it be until the DA's Office decides whether to press charges?
If the defendant is in custody, we'll decide whether to move forward on the case within 3 business days. If the defendant is not currently in custody (has been released on bail or not arrested), it could be several weeks before we decide whether to prosecute the case.
Q. Is there a way to speak or meet with the district attorney who is reviewing my case?
Absolutely. As the victim, the DA assigned to your case will attempt to contact you via text or phone call prior to deciding whether to file charges. You can also call the following phone numbers and ask to speak to the DA assigned to your case:
North County (760) 806-4222
Central (619) 531-4300
East County (619) 441-4001
South Bay (619) 498-5650
Q. When will I know if charges have been filed?
The DA's Office will try to contact you about this in several ways:
Text (if you've received any texts from the DA's Office so far, we'll send you a case update text if charges have been filed)
Letter (if we don't have a phone number for you)
Q. If charges are filed, how can I continue to track the status of my case?
To track your case after charges have been filed, you will need to visit: https://www.sdcda.org/case. At this site, you can look up the status of your case at any time using your Court Case Number (it starts with "CN"). You can also register at this site to receive automatic email notifications when there is an update to your case.
No texts case updates will be sent to you once charges have been filed -- the only way to receive automated updates after that point is by going to https://www.sdcda.org/case and registering your email address for updates.
Q. How is COVID affecting my case and the court dates?
There is a backlog due to COVID, but arraignments for defendants who were released on bail are being scheduled about 45 days from the date of arrest.
Arraignments for defendants who are still in custody (not released on bail) are usually being scheduled 3 to 7 days after being taken into custody.
Q. What is a domestic violence CPO (criminal protective order)?
A criminal protective order is an order made by a judge to protect a victim of a crime. If the DA's office files charges in a domestic violence case, at the time of the arraignment, the DA's office will ask the judge to impose a CPO to protect the victim. A "full" CPO does not allow any contact between the defendant and the victim. A "limited" CPO allows peaceful contact between the defendant and victim.
Q. Can you modify my domestic violence CPO (criminal protective order)?
In California, only a judge can modify your CPO. You can contact the San Diego County Public Defender's Office at (619) 338-4700 to get help modifying your CPO.
Q. What is a domestic violence TRO (temporary restraining order)?
This type of TRO is civil in nature. A TRO is not tied to a specific crime case the way a criminal protective order (CPO) is. A domestic violence TRO doesn't end if a case is dismissed, or a defendant is found not guilty. If you are afraid for your safety, we encourage you to get a domestic violence TRO. You can get FREE help with a domestic violence restraining order application if you are a victim or survivor of domestic violence. For help, visit the Superior Court of California's website.
Q. As a crime victim, can I apply for assistance to relocate or for reimbursement of medical expenses?
To find out if you're eligible, visit: https://victims.ca.gov/for-victims/who-is-eligible/