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      CCRP 556.1     

  

Art. 556.1. Plea of guilty or nolo contendere in felony cases; duty of court

            A. In a felony case, the court shall not accept a plea of guilty or nolo contendere without first addressing the defendant personally in open court and informing him of, and determining that he understands, all of the following:

            (1) The nature of the charge to which the plea is offered, the mandatory minimum penalty provided by law, if any, and the maximum possible penalty provided by law.

            (2) If the defendant is not represented by an attorney, that he has the right to be represented by an attorney at every stage of the proceeding against him and, if financially unable to employ counsel, one will be appointed to represent him.

            (3) That he has the right to plead not guilty or to persist in that plea if it has already been made, and that he has the right to be tried by a jury and at that trial has the right to the assistance of counsel, the right to confront and cross-examine witnesses against him, and the right not to be compelled to incriminate himself.

            (4) That if he pleads guilty or nolo contendere there will not be a further trial of any kind, so that by pleading guilty or nolo contendere he waives the right to a trial.

            B. In a felony case, the court shall not accept a plea of guilty or nolo contendere without first addressing the defendant personally in open court and determining that the plea is voluntary and not the result of force or threats or of promises apart from a plea agreement.

            C. The court shall also inquire as to whether the defendant's willingness to plead guilty or nolo contendere results from prior discussions between the district attorney and the defendant or his attorney. If a plea agreement has been reached by the parties, the court, on the record, shall require the disclosure of the agreement in open court or, on a showing of good cause, in camera, at the time the plea is offered.

            D. In a felony case a verbatim record shall be made of the proceedings at which the defendant enters a plea of guilty or nolo contendere.

            E. Any variance from the procedures required by this Article which does not affect substantial rights of the accused shall not invalidate the plea.

            F. Nothing in this Article prohibits the court, by local rule, from providing for a defendant's appearance at the entry of his plea of guilty or nolo contendere by simultaneous audio-visual transmission in accordance with the provisions of Articles 551 and 562.

            Acts 1997, No. 1061, §1; Acts 2001, No. 243, §1; Acts 2017, No. 406, §1.



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