Criminal Department


The Superior Court of Arizona in Maricopa County is the 4th largest trial court in the country.  The court has jurisdiction over all felony cases committed in Maricopa County.
The Criminal Department is the largest department within the court.  The department works in collaboration with other criminal justice agencies to efficiently resolve cases in a just manner, respecting the rights of defendants, victims, and the community.

In February of 2012, the Criminal Department began operations in the South Court Tower, a 700,000 square foot facility designed with access to justice in mind.  The South Court Tower facilitates the effective and efficient flow of felony criminal cases.

Specialized Courts

The Criminal Department anchors specialized courts such as, Initial Appearance Court, Early Disposition Court, Drug Court, DUI Court, Veterans Court, Comprehensive Mental Health Court and Seriously Mentally Ill Probation Violation Court. These calendars help to expedite cases though the justice system, in addition to offering more specialized services where needed.

Case Procedures

The criminal courts hear cases where the State has filed charges against one or more persons alleged to have committed criminal offenses. There are specific steps in case procedures that the Criminal Department oversees.

Learn More About Criminal Court

The Criminal Department offers many innovative programs, projects and courts, and department information is available online or take a virtual tour of the South Court Tower.

Judge Starr
Criminal Presiding Judge
Patricia Starr

Christopher Bleuenstein
Criminal Court Administrator
Contact the Criminal Department

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