The Falmouth district court is responsible for hearing criminal cases and other legal matters originating from the jurisdictions in eastern Cape Cod, within of Bourne, Falmouth, and Mashpee. Those local police departments are the most frequently seen visitors in the courthouse, as well as the Massachusetts State Police that operates out of the Bourne barracks, and patrols the local highways, including Route 28 from the Bourne bridge to Falmouth.
The courthouse itself has a strangely laid out floorplan, but it is only a 1 story courthouse, so it is fairly easy to navigate.
Where is the Falmouth district court located?
The address of the court is:
161 Jones Rd, Falmouth, MA 02540
Parking at Falmouth District Court
There is a free parking lot right next to the courthouse.
Is there public transportation?
The Cape Cod Regional Transportation Sealine bus route runs through Falmouth, from the Hyannis Transportation Center to Woods Hole.
The closest stop to the courthouse is at the Falmouth Bus Depot, which is about a mile from the courthouse to the east. It also stops at the Falmouth Mall to the west, which is about 1.2 miles from the courthouse.
You can track the Sealine bus in real time on Nextbus.
Can I bring my phone or tablet in in the courthouse?
No, you can’t. Falmouth restricts phones and computers from entering the courthouse if you aren’t an attorney or a court employee.
What time should I get there?
It’s a good idea to get there by 8:30am. Activity in the courtroom gets going at 9am, but you likely need to take care of things first, check in, get through security, etc.
Clerk Magistrate’s Hearing in Falmouth
If you got a citation marked as a criminal complaint, and sent it in, the court notifies of the date of your Clerk Magistrate’s hearing.
When you are appearing at a hearing at the Falmouth district court, first you need to check in at the Clerk’s office. The Clerks office is directly on your right when you walk in.
The clerk’s office will tell you which is the hearing room where the Clerk Magistrate’s hearings will be heard, where you’ll be called and where to wait.
You are not required to have an attorney represent you at these hearings, but these hearings are the best opportunity to avoid a criminal charge, and having an attorney experienced in arguing in front of the Magistrate will significantly improve your chances to keep your record completely clean.
More on how clerk’s hearings work here.
The arraignments are held in the first session courtroom, which is directly visible when you walk in. But you need to check in with the probation department first. They will start the process of getting you a court appointed attorney if you are eligible. If you already have an attorney, plan to hire a private attorney, or just know you don’t qualify financially as “indigent”, you can ask to skip this.
After probation, head back to the first session courtroom. When your name is called, you will stand before the judge as they read the charges, and formally charge you with a crime.
- You will plead not guilty.
- When they hand you the paperwork with your next court date to appear (a pretrial conference), ask for a copy of your police report.
- Don’t speak to anyone about your case without your lawyer present.
Pretrial hearings are also heard in the first session courtroom, the same one as where arraignments are held. This usually happens later in the morning after the arraignment session.
Criminal Trials in Falmouth
The trial courtroom in the 2nd session jury to the left after entering. Your attorney will be present and will walk you through what you need to know.
Is there anywhere to eat near the courthouse?
There are a few restaurants within walking distance. Just across the street is the Homeport Sushi & Kitchen for Japanese.
Over on Palmer Ave (Route 28) is the Cape Cod Bagel Cafe which has sandwiches, Seafood Sam’s a casual seafood place, and a Dunkin’ Donuts.