September 23, 2017

Court News & Notices

High Profile Case Information Available Online

January 13, 2014

If you have interest in a specific court date because you are monitoring the case and/or plan to attend court, please check the Court’s website to ensure that the date and time is still accurate.

Stanislaus Superior Court Announces Plans to Start a Veterans Court

September 10, 2015

The Superior Court of California, County of Stanislaus is pleased to announce the establishment of a new collaborative court that will serve veterans starting in January, 2016.  The court will be partnering with the California Veteran’s Legal Task Force, Veterans Administration, Stanislaus County Behavior Health & Recovery Services, Stanislaus District Attorney, Stanislaus Public Defender, Stanislaus Probation Department, Aging & Veterans Services, California Department of Corrections, and the Modesto Veteran’s Center.

The goal of the court will be to provide support and services to address underlying issues that affect the community with the intent of re-connecting the individual with society in a productive, healthy manner; intervene early, and promptly, placing qualified individuals in a collaborative court program; provide access to a continuum of services, including treatment and rehabilitation services; provide ongoing judicial interaction with each individual participant; and strengthen partnerships among public agencies and service providers to increase the availability of services.

The Court received approximately $500,000 through the Judicial Council.  As part of the Budget Act of 2014, the Legislature allocated $15 million from the Recidivism Reduction Fund for a competitive grant program to be administered by the Judicial Council of California.  The funds are designated for courts to use in the administration and operation of programs and practices known to reduce offender recidivism and enhance public safety.

Stanislaus County currently has a veteran population of approximately 27,000.  Of this, women comprise approximately 5 percent.   Approximately 4 percent of the overall jail population in the county is comprised of veterans.  The court will serve all veterans.

Child Custody Counseling Orientation Class Information

October 1, 2015

The Child Custody Counseling live orientation class is no longer available. The court has an online orientation that can be accessed using the link, Child Custody Counseling Orientation. By clicking on this link you will be taken to the orientation program. You must complete the orientation class online prior to your court date and take the certificate of completion, or email, to your court date to show that you have completed the class. The orientation includes important information about logistics and resources, helping children through their parents’ separation, and how to develop a parenting plan. If you don’t have a home computer the county library and our self-help center have computers that you can access. If you use the library you will have to take your own headphones.


Click here for Online Supervised Visitation Orientation.

Small Claims and Unlawful Detainers Changes Effective January 4, 2016

December 31, 2015

The Superior Court has transferred all Small Claims and Unlawful Detainer matters to the Turlock Court located at 300 Starr Avenue, Turlock, CA, effective January 4, 2016.

All Small Claims and Unlawful Detainer matters will be required to file their actions and subsequent documents at the Turlock Courthouse. The business hours will be Monday through Thursday 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and Friday 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

Any matters currently set at the 10th Street courtrooms will be handled at that location through December 31, 2015. Subsequent hearings and document processing will be handled at the Turlock Courthouse.

Court Media Credential Badge Application

August 5, 2016


Only emailed or hand-delivered applications will be accepted.

If an application was previously submitted and a media badge was provided, a new application is not required.

  1. Complete the Court Media Credential Badge Application: Court Media Credential Badge Application
    • Save this file to your computer
    • Complete the form
    • Attach the completed form to an email
    • In the same email, also attach a photo of yourself – Photo requirements: jpeg photo (2” x 2”)
    • Email the application and photo to:
  2. Pick up the badge in person – signature and ID required!
    • To be notified of date and time.
      800 – 11th Street, Room 100, Modesto, CA
  3. Read posted copy of the Decorum Order For Media 10/05/15
    • A signature page is required and will be available when picking up the badge to acknowledge receipt and agreement to comply with the terms.

Judicial Calendar Assignments 2017

December 15, 2016



CONTACT: Ronna Uliana (209) 530-3111


The Superior Court of California, County of Stanislaus is pleased to announce the following leadership and assignment changes effective January 2017:


Presiding Judge Judge Ricardo Cordova
Asst. Presiding Judge Judge Dawna Reeves
Supervising Family Law Judge Jack Jacobson
Supervising Civil Judge Timothy Salter
Supervising Criminal Judge Thomas Zeff
Presiding Judge Juvenile Judge Ann Ameral


Department 1 Judge Dawna Reeves Criminal
Department 2 Judge Linda McFadden Criminal - Specialty Calendar
Department 3 Judge Marie Silveria Criminal
Department 4 Judge Rick Distaso Criminal
Department 5 Judge Thomas Zeff Criminal
Department 6 Judge Nancy Ashley Criminal
Department 7 Judge Scott Steffen Criminal
Department 8 Judge Ricardo Cordova Criminal
Department 9 Judge Robert Westbrook Criminal
Department 10 Judge Shawn Bessey Criminal
Department 11 Judge Alan Cassidy Family Law
Department 12 Judge TBD-Vacant Criminal Arraignments
Department 13 Judge Valli Israels Family Law
Department 14 Judge Jack Jacobson Family Law
Department 15 Commissioner Ken Hara Family Law - DCSS
Department 17 Judge Ruben Villalobos Juvenile Delinquency
Department 18 Judge Ann Ameral Juvenile Dependency
Department 19 Commissioner Jared Beeson Civil/Small Claims
Department 20 Commissioner Lynne Meredith Traffic
Department 21 Judge William Mayhew Civil
Department 22 Judge Timothy Salter Civil
Department 23 Judge John Freeland Civil
Department 24 Judge Roger Beauchesne Civil
Department 25 Judge Loretta Begen Family Law
Department 26 Assigned Judge Barbara Zúñiga Criminal

For inquiries please contact Ronna Uliana at 530-3111 or

For 2017 Judicial Assignments Official Release please click this link

Court Appoints Hugh Swift as Court Executive Officer

March 14, 2017


March 6, 2017

CONTACT:  Jeanine Bean
(209) 530-3111

Court Appoints Hugh Swift as Court Executive Officer

MODESTO, CA- Stanislaus County Superior Court Presiding Judge Ricardo Cordova is pleased to announce the appointment of Hugh Swift as its Court Executive Officer. 

A selection committee, led by Judge Cordova, recommended Mr. Swift for the position after conducting a national recruitment effort.  The Court’s Executive Committee of judges adopted the selection recommendation when it met on February 16, 2017.   

Judge Cordova noted that, “Mr. Swift brings a broad range of experience to the court.  In addition to being a research attorney for the court since February 2016, Mr. Swift previously served as a court executive officer in Calaveras, Amador and Glenn counties.  He has also been a superior court judge, commissioner and an administrative law judge.  I believe this experience uniquely qualifies Mr. Swift to meet the challenges the Court faces as we continue with our mission to provide access to justice to the residents of Stanislaus County.”  

As a court executive officer, Mr. Swift will supervise all of the non-judicial operations of the court.  Mr. Swift has worked almost exclusively in the California trial courts since 1999 and his experience includes oversight of courthouse construction and information technology projects, as well as budget, court operations and human resource management.  

Mr. Swift received a Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of San Diego and a law degree from California Western School of Law.  His appointment as Court Executive Officer is effective March 6, 2017.  


April 20, 2017

Effective Monday, July 3, 2017, all Stanislaus County Superior Court offices will reduce service hours for the public filing windows only.  The changes in public service will not limit public access to the building, courtroom calendars or schedules.  Due to the lack of available staff, public service hours at filing windows will be 8:15 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Document drop boxes are located outside each Clerk’s office for filing papers or submitting payments.  Pursuant to California Rules of Court, rule 2.210(b) any document deposited in a court’s drop box up to and including 4:00 p.m. on a court day is deemed to have been deposited for filing on that day. 

Government Code §68106 requires trial courts to provide notice to the public at least 60 days before closing any courtroom or closing or reducing hours of clerks’ offices by conspicuous posting within its facilities and on its public website.

Self Help Center/Facilitator Notice of Closure

August 10, 2017

The Self-Help Center and Office of the Family Law Facilitator will be closed temporarily from Tuesday, September 12th at 12:00 PM to Monday, September 18th at 8:00 AM. Sorry for the inconvenience.

El Centro de Auto Ayuda y La Oficina del Facilitador de la Ley Familiar estarán CERRADOS del martes 12 de septiembre a las 12:00 PM hasta el lunes 18 de septiembre a las 8:00 AM. Disculpe la inconveniencia.