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Step 6 - The Not Guilty Plea

A defendant entering a plea of not guilty may choose to be tried by a jury of twelve citizens or by the judge alone.

At either type of trial, the case for the Commonwealth is presented by the DA who must establish the defendant’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. The defendant is under no obligation to present evidence or testimony but may do so if he/she wishes.

If tried by a jury, the jury must return a unanimous verdict; if tried by the judge, the judge alone returns the verdict.